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Migrant crisis Swiss customs report twice as many illegal migrants

A large number of migrants were picked up on trains entering Switzerland


The number of undocumented migrants without the right to stay in Switzerland more than doubled in 2015. The number of people smugglers apprehended increased by almost 20%.

According to information released by the Swiss Customs Administration on Tuesday, over 31,000 illegal migrants were identified in 2015. This represents an increase of around 118% over the previous year. 

The largest numbers of undocumented migrants was observed in the canton of Ticino, with over 10,000 unregistered migrants. Other hotspots include eastern Switzerland (almost 7,000), Basel-Schaffhausen (almost 6,500) and Vaud-Valais (over 5,300). 

Slightly over 18,000 people filed an asylum application with Swiss customs and border guards in 2015, an increase of around 65% over the previous year. 

Customs also intercepted more people smugglers in 2015 than the year before. They documented 466 cases of people smuggling, an increase of 20%. 

Almost 20,000 people were prevented from entering Switzerland due to entry bans or arrest mandates and more than 2,200 cases of prohibited weapons trafficking were intercepted.

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