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Number of new asylum seekers to Norway drops last week
December 01,2015   By:Xinhua
OSLO,Dec.1,2015-- The number of new asylum seekers registered in Norway last week decreased by more than 50 percent compared with the week before due to stricter border controls in neighboring Sweden, the Norwegian Directorate of Immigration (UDI) said on Monday.
A total of 968 asylum seekers were registered in Norway last week while 2,108 were registered in the previous week, according to the latest data published by the UDI.
"We assume that the main reason why we see such a sharp decline right now is the border controls Sweden has introduced against Denmark and Germany," UDI director Frode Forfang told at a press conference.
He stressed that nearly 1,000 asylum seekers in a week is still a very high figure for Norway, which has a population of 5.2 million people.
"There is still a very, very great need for places in reception centers. We must not underestimate the huge gap between the number of reception centers we have today and what we need in the months and years to come," Forfang said.
Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Lofvenon said last week that his country was no longer capable of receiving asylum seekers at the high level as before and would implement measures to reduce the influx of refugees, including border controls and stricter residence and family reunification measures.
Following Lofvenon's announcement, Norway also introduced temporary border controls to prevent people without the required travel documents from entering the Nordic country amid an increasing influx of refugees. 
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