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Tracking migration by religion yields little-known facts about who's moving where

A new interactive feature on religion and migration from the Pew Research Center yields a couple of little-known surprises. For starters, while the United States remains the world's top destination for immigrants, what is the second? Russia. Third place goes to Germany. And while some European government officials have made much of Muslim immigrants coming to Europe, Muslims don't represent the bulk of immigrants there - the majority are Christian.

Worldwide, nearly half of all migrants are Christian, due largely to migration from Latin America to the U.S. The Wall Street Journal reports on the data today:

Russia, with 12 million immigrants, is the second-most-popular destination for immigrants, followed by Germany, with more than 10 million immigrants. Saudi Arabia and Canada were next, each attracting just over 7 million immigrants.

Mexico is the largest country of origin of Christian migrants, most of them now living in the U.S., the report says. The U.S. has received more than 12 million mostly Christian immigrants from Mexico alone, it says.

Despite the concerns of some in Europe over a rise in Muslim immigration, the study says that Christian immigrants outnumber Muslim immigrants in the 27 countries of the European Union. Around 26 million Christian immigrants make up 56% of the immigrant population of the EU nations; Muslim immigrants make up 27%, with 13 million foreign-born Muslims living in the EU.

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