BUDAPEST, Feb. 3 (Xinhua) -- A Hungarian official in charge of immigration told reporters here on Friday that a total of 29,432 people applied for asylum in the country in 2016, a large drop compared with 177,000 filed the year before.
And as many as 18,236 have been registered as illegal immigrants in 2016, said Zsuzsanna Vegh, the director of the Immigration and Asylum Office.
The director said that the decrease in the number is due to the agreement between the European Union (EU) and Turkey.
But he rejected any illusion of a thorough settlement of the migrant issue.
"Last year, the number of illegal immigrants and asylum-seekers has dropped significantly, but we cannot have the illusion that the problems will solve themselves," said Vegh.
"This agreement is frail, and if the 3 million migrants decide to start their journey towards Europe, this could be quite dangerous, just as the ones fleeing poverty from Africa," the director warned.
Vegh also explained that the majority of the asylum seekers do not wait for the decision of the Immigration and Asylum Office for their case to be settled and leave the country, that is why the majority of the procedures could not be finished.
Among the processed cases, the Hungarian office refused asylum in 4,675 cases and granted asylum for 432 people last year.
She said that the EU should pay more attention to the protection of its borders and to the assistance and aid given to the countries sending the migrants.