Twenty-one per cent of all crimes committed by foreigners in Austria are committed by asylum seekers – a number greatly disproportionate to the population of non-Austrian nationals. The numbers are several percentage points higher than in 2015, before the massive migrant influx from the Middle East and North Africa, with over 11,000 criminal migrants reported in the first six months of 2016, reports Austrian paper Salzburg Nachrichten.
Reliable figures for the real number of asylum seekers in Austria are
often hard to find. The government has long claimed that the asylum
ceiling of 37,500 migrants has not been reached, though a new report
prompted by the Freedom Party (FPÖ) revealed that illegal border crossings numbered well over 120,000.
The official number of criminal asylum seekers stands at 11,158 for
the first six months of 2016. The number is just under half of the
government’s official figures for the total number of asylum seekers who
have entered the country this year.
The statistics, which were released by the Federal police on Tuesday,
were requested by the FPÖ and show that most of the offenders, 4,208,
are men under the age of 20 and 20 per cent of all offenders came from
A breakdown of the various criminal offences shows a huge percentage of rapes, 35 per cent, and sexual assaults,
38.5 per cent, are committed by asylum seekers. Drug offences were
high, notably the consumption of illegal drugs as well as trafficking
Drug dealing on the streets of the Austrian capital of Vienna is,
according to police, almost exclusively done by Nigerian migrants.
Certain areas have become drug problem zones which the Vienna police
have vowed to crack down on earlier this year.
Asylum seekers also accounted for a large number of cases of assault,
often toward other asylum seekers. Mass brawls of migrants of
different ethnic and religious backgrounds have become far more common
in Austria, with areas like the Prater park in Vienna seeing repeated conflicts between migrants.
The statistics for foreign crime include not only asylum seekers, but
anyone who either lives in Austria without permanent residency and even
tourists. When millions of tourists are factored out, the number of
asylum seekers committing crimes become vastly disproportionate to the
total number of foreigners in the country.
When questioned about the statistics, Interior Minister Wolfgang
Sobotka claimed that the numbers were too raw and that the data needed
to be properly assessed to find out the real trends behind crime
committed by foreigners.