Facts about the activities of the Danish authorities in the border region

Since Sunday afternoon around 3000 refugees and migrants have been arriving in Denmark from Germany.

They have mainly been arriving by train in large groups of 100-200 persons. In most cases the refugees and migrants do not seem to have been stopped or registered on their way to the Danish border.

The Danish authorities, including the police, have so far tried to handle the situation according to normal procedures according to which the police, in so far possible, will ascertain the identity, nationality and residence status of a foreign national who is suspected of having entered Denmark illegally. As part of this procedure the police will ask the person in question if he or she wants to apply for asylum in Denmark.

Only a limited number of about 400 persons, however, have asked for asylum in Denmark. This group has been transported to the asylum reception facilities in the Sandholm camp for registration according to normal procedures.

The large majority of the arrivals, however, have refused to communicate with Danish authorities. Most of those who have had contact with the Danish police have stated that they want to go to Sweden to claim asylum.

The Danish authorities have offered shelter and food to all the refugees and migrants in the border area, mainly in local schools and hotels. They have been treated with care and respect. Many have, however, left the temporary housing to continue their journey to Sweden by foot in large or smaller groups. Large groups have walked north on Danish highways escorted by Danish police for their safety. 

The Danish government has had contacts with the Swedish government to enquire whether Sweden would be willing to receive those who insist that they want to apply for asylum in Sweden. The Swedish government has refused to accept that they be transported to the border. The Danish government understands and accepts this.

Due to the large numbers of refugees and migrants who have arrived since Sunday, the situation is becoming unsustainable. The Danish police resourced are stretched, and it is becoming increasing difficult to handle the large groups of people who have entered Denmark illegally from Germany.

On Wednesday afternoon Danish police authorities decided in coordination with German police authorities to temporarily cancel all trains between Denmark and Germany for reasons of safety and in order to secure order in the border areas.


Facts on numbers and persons seeking asylum in Denmark

In 2014 Denmark

  • was the fifth largest recipient of asylum seekers in the EU per capita
  • was the second largest recipient of Syrian asylum seekers in the EU per capita
  • had the seventh highest UNHCR refugee resettlement quota among EU Member States - in nominal terms
  • was the biggest contributor among all EU Member States to the EU Regional Protection and Development Program for Syria and the neighboring region.