There has been a 506 percent rise in the number of asylum applications in EU countries from Turkish citizens over the past five years, according to data from Eurostat.
While only 2,995 Turkish citizens sought asylum in EU countries in 2015, this figure rose to 18,145 in 2020.
Thousands of people had to flee Turkey in the aftermath of a coup attempt in July 2016, following which Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) launched a widespread crackdown on non-loyalist citizens under the pretext of an anti-coup fight. These people, some of whom had to flee the country illegally by way of the Aegean Sea or Maritsa River land border because their passports had been canceled under state of emergency measures taken by the government, applied for asylum in Europe and other countries.
Over the years, the number of asylum applications approved in EU countries has also increased. For instance, while only 21 percent of asylum applications were approved in 2016, 51 percent were approved in 2019 and 43 percent in 2020.
According to Eurostat data, Germany has received the highest number of applications from Turkish citizens of all EU countries, with 51 percent of all Turks who sought asylum in the EU filing in Germany. Among them, 54.6 percent have been granted asylum.