Statistical Review

Statistical Data On Iranian Refugees 1 and asylum seekers2

(last updated September 2013)

At the end of 2012, based on data received or estimated by United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the number of Iranian refugees was 75,613 of which 12,177 were assisted by the UNHCR mostly in Iraq (8,229). According to the same source at the end of this year there were 45.2 million forcibly displaced people worldwide, including 10.5 million refugees who fall under UNHCR’s mandate, some 4.9 million Palestinian refugees under the responsibility of the U. N. Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), and 28.8 million people displaced within their country as a result of armed conflict.


Iranian refugees (2001-2012)

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

2012

86,286

137,948

132,491

115,149

98,722

102,483

68,397

69,061

72,773

68,791

72,347

75,613

Assisted by UNHCR

26,063

22,704

21,934

12,122

15,783

14,353

14,120

13,851

15,097

10,721

12,031

12,177


During 2012, 24,139 applications (first instance, appeal, etc) for asylum or refugee status were submitted by Iranians to Governments or UNHCR offices. During the same year, applications submitted by all nationalities in 164 countries amounted to 893,700. By nationality, the highest number of new asylum claims in 2012 was filed by individuals from D.R. Congo (52,400), Afghanistan (48,900), Syria (31,800), Eritrea (29,700), Pakistan (28,500), and Somalia (28,300).


Asylum Applications Filed by Iranians (2001-2012)

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

2012

All countries

23,600

17,929

18,250

15,519

13,532

13,401

14,120

13,329

15,890

19,004

24,812

24,139

Industrialized countries

20,075

14,668

16,323

12,414

9,191

10,649

8,703

10,813

11,537

15,185

18,175

19,068


Applications filed by Iranians in Industrialized Countries (1982-2012)

Total: 503,360

In 2012, the six destination countries that received the largest numbers of new applications from Iranians were Germany (4,348), Turkey (3,589), the United Kingdom (3,154), Australia (1,839), Sweden (1,529), and Austria (761). /Nine countries receiving most of the new asylum applications from all nationalities were United States (70,400), Germany (64,500),South Africa (61,500), France (55,100), Sweden (43,900), UK (27,500), Switzerland (25,900), Australia (25,300), and Canada (20,200).

Twelve main destination countries of new asylum applications from Iran (2001-2012)

United Kingdom, Turkey/UNHCR, Germany, Sweden,the Netherlands, Belgium, Australia, USA, Austria, Norway, Cyprus, and Canada


2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

2012

Total

UK

3,415

2,685

3,495

3,975

3,480

2,675

2,510

2,585

2,130

2,210

3,045

3,154

35,359

TUR/U

3,385

2,505

3,092

2,029

1,716

2,297

1,687

2,116

1,198

2,881

3,411

3,589

30,689

GFR

3,455

2,642

2,053

1,369

916

609

616

815

1,170

2,475

3,352

4,348

23,820

SWE

780

762

787

660

582

494

485

799

1,144

1,182

1,118

1,529

10,322

NET

1,519

663

555

450

557

921

187

322

502

785

929

N/A

7,390

BEL

1,164

743

1,153

512

497

631

411

614

732

261

367

169

7,254

AUL

559

57

69

41

101

77

84

161

312

1,354

2,156

1,839

6,810

USA

944

880

654

421

337

388

303

334

344

494

590

652

6,341

AUS

734

760

981

347

306

274

248

250

340

387

457

761

5,845

NOR

412

450

621

394

279

218

222

720

574

429

355

441

5,115

CYP

687

388

465

668

569

305

475

213

171

118

68

43

4,170

CAN

768

381

308

342

343

237

220

267

310

327

319

277

4,099



Five top destination countries of new asylum applications from Iran (2001-2011)

United Kingdom, Turkey/UNHCR, Germany, Sweden and the Netherlands.

Of 21,310 decisions taken on Iranian asylum applications in 2012, including cases from previous years, some10,327 resulted in refugee status, 447 decisions resulted in humanitarian status, 7,707 cases were rejected, and 2,671 cases were closed on other grounds. When cases closed on other non-substantive grounds are excluded, the global refugee recognition percentage for Iranian asylum applicants during 2011 amounted to 55.9%, whereas the total recognition percentage, including grants of humanitarian status, amounted to 58.3%.

In total, the global refugee recognition rate for all nationalities in 2012 amounted to 30%. When asylum-seekers allowed to remain on humanitarian grounds are included, the recognition rate was 38%.

Total recognition percentages (2001-2012) (refugee status/refugee & humanitarian status)

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

2012

Iranians

29/34

28/33

27/30

23/27

21/28

30/37

33/41

36/44

37/44

44/49

50/55

56/58

All Nationalities

24/36

22/30

21/27

21/29

27/37

28/39

32/45

29/41

38/47

30/39

30/38

30/38


Some examples of first instance total recognition rates (refugee & humanitarian) for Iranian applications in 2012 were: Australia (68%), Austria (82%), Canada (85%),France (54%), Germany (59%), Sweden (45%), Turkey-UNHCR (92%), UK (55%), and USA-INS (98%).

First instance recognition percentages (refugee & humanitarian) in twelve main destination countries of new asylum seekers from Iran (2001-2012)


2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

2012

UK

17

n/a

9

9

14

17

24

27

20

32

49

55

TUR/U*

(70)70

(72)n/a

(79)84

(75)53

(67)78

(90)82

(88)91

85

84

95

95

92

GFR

21

19

11

12

17

18

27

29

52

55

56

59

SWE

37

15

10

7

16

29

30

24

23

24

37

45

NET

8

8

25

34

41

33

46

44

45

51

47

n/a

BEL

n/a

n/a

n/a

9

20

24

14

15

31

35

43

59

AUL

30

n/a

n/a

n/a

73

n/a

n/a

78

91

76

58

68

USA-INS

71

n/a

48

54

49

55

63

74

98

97

97

98

AUS

n/a

n/a

62

79

87

78

89

73

63

63

74

82

NOR

n/a

n/a

25

n/a

20

19

26

38

12

22

32

34

CYP

n/a

n/a

1

n/a

12

12

n/a

7

6

8

32

n/a

CAN

70

66

67

68

84

84

84

92

90

81

88

85

* Figures in parenthesis are from UNHCR-Turkey. All other figures are from the Statistical Unit of UNHCR Headquarters.


During 2012, a total of 88,600 refugees were admitted by 22 resettlement countries, including the United States of America (66,300), Canada (9,600), Australia (5,900), Sweden (1,900), and Norway (1,200). Some 71,300 who were resettled with UNHCR’s assistance were mostly from Myanmar (17,400), Bhutan (16,700), Iraq (13,700), and Somalia (7,000).

In 2012, 1,947 Iranians were resettled including from Turkey (1,925) and Iraq (22) in various countries with UNHCR’s assistance. In addition to Iranians referred to the United States by the UNHCR in Turkey, the United States also resettled Iranian religious minorities as persons of special concern who applied directly to the U.S. program for refugee processing in Austria. 1,758 Iranians were admitted to the U.S. as refugees in FY 2012.

UNHCR assisted resettlement of Iranian refugees (2001-2012)


2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

2012

total

3,502

2,831

2,673

2,191

1,223

1,501

1,688

1,285

1,696

1,283

1,931

1,947

Turkey

2,209

2,349

2,560

2,032

1,083

1,421

1,546

1,190

1,575

1,210

1,815

1,925

Iraq

752

314


47

22

-

-

95

35

18

26

22

Pakistan

579

378

66

39

54

15

-

-

-

-

-

-

other

166

102

74

58

103

80

142

-

86

55

90

-


Iranians resettled in the United States (FY 1983-2012)

1983-1998

42,957

1999

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

2012

1,737

5,099

6,581

1,525

2,471

1,787

1,856

2,792

5,481

5,270

5,381

3,543

2,032

1,758


Sources:

UNHCR- Global Trends 2012 , 2013

UNHCR- Global Trends 2011 , 2012

UNHCR- Global Trends 2010 , July 2011

2009 Global Trends: Refugees, Asylum-seekers, Returnees, Internally Displaced and Stateless Persons , 15 June 2010

2008 Global Trends: Refugees, Asylum-seekers, Returnees, Internally Displaced and Stateless Persons , 16 June 2009

2007 Global Trends: Refugees, Asylum-seekers, Returnees, Internally Displaced and Stateless Persons , 17 June 2008

2006 Global Trends: Refugees, Asylum-seekers, Returnees, Internally Displaced and Stateless Persons (revised 16 July 2007) ,16 July 2007

2005 Global Refugee Trends: Statistical overview of populations of refugees, asylum-seekers, internally displaced persons, stateless persons, and other persons of concern to UNHCR , 9 June 2006

2004 Global Refugee Trends: Overview of refugee populations, new arrivals, durable solutions, asylum seekers and other persons of concern to UNHCR , 17 June 2005

2003 Global Refugee Trends: Overview of refugee populations, new arrivals, durable solutions, asylum seekers and other persons of concern to UNHCR , 15 June 2004

UNHCR Statistical Yearbook 2007 , 31 December 2008

UNHCR Statistical Yearbook 2006 , 15 January 2008

UNHCR Statistical Yearbook 2005 , 5 August 2007

UNHCR Statistical Yearbook 2004 , 21 August 2005

UNHCR Statistical Yearbook 2003 , 15 June 2005

UNHCR Statistical Yearbook 2002 ,2 September 2004

UNHCR Statistical Yearbook 2001 , 09 November 2002

Refugees and Others of Concern to UNHCR: Statistical Overview - first quarter 2000, 31 May 2000

Refugees and Others of Concern to UNHCR - 1999 Statistical Overview , 1 July 2000

US Department of Homeland Security, Office of Immigration Statistics , Yearbook of Immigration Statistics: 2008

Office of Refugee Resettlement, Annual ORR Reports to Congress , 2002

Refugee Admissions Program for Near East and South Asia, Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration Fact Sheet, February 6, 2009

FY11 Refugee Admissions Statistics, January 31, 2011

FY12 Refugee Admissions Statistics, Feburary 28, 2012



1 Refugees include individuals recognized under the 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees; its 1967 Protocol; those recognized in accordance with the UNHCR Statute; individuals granted complementary forms of protection; or, those enjoying “temporary protection”.

2 Asylum-seekers are individuals who have sought international protection and whose claims for refugee status have not yet been determined.