Saturday, January 06, 2018

More Than 3,100 Migrants Died Crossing Mediterranean In 2017

The number of migrants who died crossing the Mediterranean Sea surpassed 3,000 for the fourth year in a row, despite an overall drop in the number of refugees making the journey.

The International Organization for Migration has called the Mediterranean "by far the world's deadliest border," as more than 33,000 migrants have died at sea trying to enter Europe since 2000.

More than 3,100 migrants died making the trip in 2017, but the IOM notes the number of fatalities is likely higher due to the number of boats that sink without rescue crews knowing. Last year, more than 5,000 people died along the sea route.

"People are still dying at sea in enormous numbers, even after years of seeing this happen repeatedly," Eugenio Ambrosi, IOM regional director for the European Union, Norway and Switzerland, said in November. "We have to ask ourselves, why is this still happening?"

The death toll continues to rise even though the number of migrants crossing the sea has significantly decreased. The number of arrivals has sharply dropped since the European Union reached a deal with Turkey in March 2016 to close a main route along the Eastern Mediterranean into Greece.

The IOM reported on Friday that 171,635 migrants and refugees entered Europe by sea in 2017, down from 363,504 arrivals last year. The majority of those migrants arrived in Italy, followed by Greece, Spain and Cyprus. - Read More

More Than 3,100 Migrants Died Crossing Mediterranean In 2017


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