9,000 Illegal Migrants Enter Germany in First Months of 2017

Thousands of Middle-Eastern, African refugees still pouring into Central European nation

Approximately 9,000 illegal migrants entered Germany during the first two months of 2017, government figures show.

The German federal police recorded 8,758 illegal entries in January and February. The largest number of migrants came from Afghanistan — 742. Authorities also counted 658 Syrians and 529 Nigerians.

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Over 3,000 of the illegal migrants entered Germany via Austria, while 1,356 entered through Switzerland. The third-largest group, 643, entered via France, while 533 crossed into Germany from Poland. Over 300 illegal migrants entered through Denmark and the Netherlands, respectively.

The large number of Nigerians suggests that the number of African migrants entering Europe via the Mediterranean is rising. A total of 20,484 migrants have crossed the Mediterranean so far this year, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) reported Tuesday.

The continued strong presence of Afghans and Syrians indicates that the “Balkan route” from the Middle East into Europe has yet to be fully closed.