Over 76,000 refugees, migrants reach EU by sea so far this year
GENEVA: International Organization for Migration (IOM) figures revealed on Tuesday that 76,263 maritime refugee and migrant arrivals have been recorded in Europe through the first six weeks of 2016.
This represents close to 2,000 arrivals on European shores every day, nearly ten times the daily average of a year ago.
With the number of arrivals showing no sign of abating, IOM indicated that the death-toll has also increased.
Some 409 people have lost their lives while attempting to reach Europe since the start of the year, compared to 428 deaths registered in the first two months of 2015.
The Eastern Mediterranean route separating Turkey and Greece remains by far the deadliest, with 319 recorded deaths.
The Central Mediterranean passage linking North Africa with Italy has seen 90 individuals lose their lives so far this year.
A breakdown of this year’s arrival-figures shows that 70,365 refugees and migrants reached Greece while 5,898 arrived in Italy.