Nine hundred and thirteen refugees were admitted to the United States during August, the first time the monthly intake has dropped below one thousand in 15 years, and the smallest number of monthly admissions since October 2002. August’s arrivals followed a pattern evident since the start of the Trump administration – a declining proportion of Muslims in comparison to Christians and adherents of other faiths. Of the 913 refugees admitted during the month, 551 (60.3 percent) were Christians, with the biggest groups including 185 Pentecostalists from Ukraine and 53 Baptists, also from Ukraine. A significantly smaller group, 220 (24.1 percent) were Muslims, including 48 Sunnis from Iraq and 47 from Syria. The remaining 142 (15.5 percent) were unaffiliated or from other religions, and included 43 Buddhists and 36 Hindus, mostly from Bhutan. In comparison, last January 49 percent of admitted refugees were Muslims and 40 percent were Christians. Over the months since, the proportion of Muslims has generally diminished while the proportion of Christians has grown, according to State Department Refugee Processing Center data. The refugee admission process can take 18-24 months, so refugees admitted since President Trump took office would almost all have lodged their applications before then. Even so, the shift in religious affiliation among those admitted since January 21 has been marked, when compared to the same period one year earlier.
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