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About 180 Afghans Who Sought International Protection in Netherlands Subject to Accelerated Asylum Process

The Dutch Immigration and Naturalization Service announced that nearly 180 Afghans who arrived in the Netherlands earlier this month will also go through an accelerated application process for international protection.

In addition, the same source confirmed that the latest changes also apply to Afghans who are still expected from Pakistan next week or those who will be relocated to the Netherlands via Germany, reports.

“Afghans were received at the airport by IND and COA staff. Then they traveled to the reception center in Zutkamp. Some Afghans who will follow later will also be received at Zest. The IND will conduct pre-registration at both centers,” the statement read.

Regarding registration and identification, the authorities in the Netherlands have made it clear that such a process would be the next step for Afghan nationals.

“These people will also be examined in the context of public order and national security, transferred persons will be informed of the asylum process, and they will be allowed to use legal aid,” the statement read.

The Ministry of Justice and Security has confirmed that once the above processes are completed, Afghan nationals will be interviewed by an Immigration and Naturalization Officer.

The interviews came shortly after provable ties were established between the Afghans and the Netherlands, according to Dutch authorities.

After the interview, the decision and possible issuance of residence documents must be finalized. Afghan citizens are allowed to be informed about the asylum process and allowed to use legal aid.

Figures provided by the Immigration and Nationality Service show that a large number of Afghans have sought international protection in the Netherlands.

Since August, the Netherlands has relocated nearly 2,360 Afghans who have applied for asylum here. The IND has made decisions on 2,310 applications in the last period; The rest is still being processed,” the statement said.

Last month, authorities in the Netherlands announced that about 25,000 international protection applications were filed in that country last year, according to figures provided by the country’s statistics department.

The same source showed that 24,740 asylum applications were submitted for the first time last year in the Dutch territory, which is an increase of 80 percent compared to the figures for 2020, when a large number of countries imposed travel restrictions and other bans in order to stop the spread of the virus.

According to the authorities in the Netherlands, last year’s figures recorded the highest rate of international protection applications for the first time since 2015, when 43,000 asylum applications were submitted.

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