BRUSSELS – Hundreds of thousands of asylum-seekers have entered the European Union this year, thousands more arrive daily, and number-crunchers and analysts are battling to understand what it all means.
The European Council of Refugees and Exiles has unveiled a new asylum information database which put numbers on covering the scale of the challenge, to the details of registering for asylum. Here's a look:
THE SIZE OF THE CHALLENGE: The Greek Council for Refugees says that of the more than 380,000 migrants that arrived in Europe by crossing the Mediterranean this year, more than 258,000 landed in Greece. Some 3,000-4,000 people are coming each day. The 50,242 arrivals in July exceeded arrivals for all of 2014, when 43,500 came. The council notes that Greece can lodge fewer than 2,000 people in its reception facilities.
More than 140,000 migrants have so far arrived in Hungary. The U.N. refugee agency said Wednesday that it expects 42,000 more over the following 10 days.
One in three migrants arriving in Sweden is a child, whether as part of a family or traveling alone. Sweden is one of the few EU member states to provide individual housing for most migrants, although some countries do have a mix of collective and individual housing. Most have collective, reception center-style lodgings.
WHO STAYS, AND WHO'S NOT SO LUCKY: Around two-thirds of migrants arriving in Europe are likely to be eligible for asylum or some other form of international protection, according to the EU presidency.
On average, 95 percent of Syrian applicants were granted protection and allowed to stay in Europe in 2014. Eritreans had an 89 percent recognition rate last year. Iraqis and Afghans were also accepted in significant numbers. In contrast, 7.1 percent of Albanians and 6.2 percent of Kosovars were granted protection.
The EU has come up with a list of "safe countries," and nationals from those countries could be less likely to be granted asylum. Among candidates for EU membership, the bloc wants to put Turkey on the "safe" list, yet some EU countries accept almost a quarter of asylum requests from Turkish nationals.
SHARING THEM OUT: Of the hundreds of thousands of asylum-seekers who have entered the European Union so far this year, the EU wants its 28 nations to share equitably in receiving 160,000 over two years.
An EU plan launched in May aimed to share 40,000 of those refugees in Greece and Italy among other EU nations. Fifteen nations are unwilling to take the share they are allotted. Two countries are offering to do more.
Under this quota plan, nine EU nations would see a 10-fold increase in the number of asylum seekers they have to accept.
WHERE MOST ARE GOING: Five EU member countries are receiving around 70 percent of asylum applications made in the 28-nation bloc. Germany was by far the biggest with almost 180,000 asylum applications in the first half of 2015, followed by Sweden, Italy, France and Hungary.
Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan are hosting some 4 million refugees, many of them Syrians. Turkey is considered the largest refugee-hosting country in the world, while Lebanon hosts most refugees per capita.
HOW LONG IT TAKES TO GET ASYLUM: On arrival in France, would-be asylum seekers have three days to lodge their applications. In Hungary, if an application is rejected the migrant has just three days to appeal. Under laws set to be introduced on Sept. 15, the Hungarian authorities aim to process asylum claims within eight days. The European target average currently is around nine months, although a new law will impose a six-month maximum. Asylum seekers in Italy can wait up to two years for their applications to be processed.
Only around 40 percent of migrants who are refused admission to Europe are actually sent home.