German Chancellor Angela Merkel says Kosovo citizens who apply for asylum in her country can rate their chances of acceptance ''as good as none''. Deborah Lutterbeck reports.
More than a third of the workforce is unemployed in Kosovo -- a place where the average salary is 230 euros a month -- just over 250 dollars a month. So they flee. In February alone the EU estimates 10,000 people from Kosovo filed for asylum in Hungary, compared with 6,000 for the whole of 2013. Around 700,000-800,000 Kosovars already live and work in western Europe, mainly Switzerland and Germany -- But on Tuesday German Chancellor Angela Merkel threw cold water on hopes for those seeking asylum in Germany. (SOUNDBITE) (German) GERMAN CHANCELLOR, ANGELA MERKEL, SAYING: "At the moment we are working on speeding up the process and to send the message 'chances are as good as none for asylum' and the prime minister, and I agreed that we have to improve the life conditions, economical conditions in Kosovo so that future chances improve for young people." More than 67,000 illegal migrants crossed into the European Union via its border with Serbia in the first six months of this year, most of them fleeing wars and unrest in Syria, Iraq, Libya or Afghanistan.