The year 2018 marks the fifth straight year that Mediterranean migrant arrivals to Europe has topped the 100,000 threshold, although this year's figure of the arrival of irregular migrants and refugees to Europe by sea is lower from previous years, the UN migrant agency said Tuesday.
The International Organization for Migration (IOM) reported Tuesday that 110,833 migrants and refugees entered Europe by sea in 2018 through Dec. 9, lower than 165,536 in 2017 and 354,395 in 2016.
Flavio Di Giacomo with IOM Rome said all seaborne irregular arrivals in the Mediterranean region remain lower, by almost 10,000 people, than arrivals last year at this time to Italy alone.
In the same period in 2017, Italy recorded 117,394 irregular arrivals of sea-borne migrants and refugees.
The bad news is that according to IOM's Missing Migrants Project, the Mediterranean region continues to account for most of deaths recorded globally, with 2,160 migrant deaths and disappearances recorded in 2018 so far.
Globally, IOM's Missing Migrants Project has recorded 3,395 people who have died or gone missing on migratory routes in 2018 so far.