Death toll rises as people try reaching Europe in 2018: UN

Last updated on September 5th, 2018

A shocking 1,500 people have died thus far in trying to reach Europe via Mediterranean Sea, the UN International organization for Migration (IOM) has said, adding that this is the fifth consecutive year that the miserable benchmark has been set.

According to the Data collected of Europe migration for the Missing Migrant Projects, the major deaths occurred because of drowning, as people tried crossing from Libya to Italy. This was followed by 304 deaths on the route to Spain and 89 on the way to Greece.

Further, the IOM has confirmed that around 304 causalities were recorded between January and July, beating the last year’s count of 124 by a big margin. Also, the official count of people who have arrived in Europe this year has lessen by 50% to 55,001, when compared to the same period last year. The number also marks 2018 as one of the deadliest years, clearly stating the catastrophic increase in amount of deaths recorded.

The IOM has also confirmed that people in the last few months tried crossing the Mediterranean, especially to reach Spain instead of Italy.

“Arrivals to Italy trail Spain by almost 3,000; a week ago the gap was less than 200,” the statement said. Additionally, 3,125 migrants have attempted to enter Spain irregularly via the country’s African enclaves of Melilla and Ceuta, according to Spanish authorities,” it added.

Stats issued also clearly state that Spain is the Mediterranean’s most sought destination for irregular migrants travelling by sea, with the stats surpassing Italy and Greece. The Greece, which was earlier the main destination for many, is not the primary choice anymore. The European Union’s deal with Turkey, has halted the number of refugee arrivals in the country.

Statistically, more than 5,000 people have arrived in Greece thus far, while Italy has seen a major downfall in the population off immigrants.

Therefore, to counter the adversities and lessen the number of refugees trying to reach Europe, the leaders of Italy and France have requested the EU to setup asylum processing centres in Africa. This would trigger the counter action and prevent refugees from taking the decisions to travel across the Mediterranean, which has widely engulfed people and made them suffer tragic deaths.

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