Sweden expects to receive 80,000 refugees this year and has more asylum seekers per capita than any other European nation thanks to a generous immigration policy allowing automatic permanent residency for Syrians.
Sweden’s Migration Agency said more that 13,700 had arrived in the country in the past five weeks. Sweden stands out in the Nordics as an exception.
Denmark has recently tightened immigration and citizenship rules, including cutting benefits for refugees by up to half in a bid to discourage them from staying here. Denmark’s tough refugee policy mirrors similar trends in Finland and Norway where right-wing anti-I refugee parties are on the ascendant and part of coalition governments.
Refugees have been streaming in by two routes from Germany — crossing by train overland into Jutland, the western part of Denmark that is connected to continental Europe, or by ferries carrying trains that arrive in Lolland, an island linked by bridges to Zealand, where Copenhagen is located.
One group of Danish volunteers said they had been giving lifts to refugees for 48 hours straight, leaving them at Copenhagen’s central station rather than in Malmo (Sweden), to avoid charges of human trafficking.
The refugees are part of a wave of refugees sweeping north through Europe, many escaping the war in Syria.