By Adam Walker-The EU received 301,000 asylum applications in 2011, the European Commission has announced.
The figure is an increase of 42,000 on the previous year.
It is estimated that around 90 per cent of claims were from new applicants and that around ten per cent were repeat applicants.
Most claimants were from the third world, particularly Middle Eastern countries.
Yesterday seen another six members of the British Army killed in an explosion whilst on a security patrol in their Warrior armed fighting vehicle in the Kandahar province of Afghanistan.
This loss brings the total tally of British armed forces deaths to 404 since 2001 and since the coalition government came to power a 120 British armed forces have lost their lives.