521 Migrants including Nigerians, died in Mediterranean in 9 weeks

'Migrants rescue efforts encouraging traffickers' 

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) has disclosed that 521 migrants of the 19,567, who arrived Italy by sea died in the Mediterranean within nine weeks in 2017.

This figure, IOM said, increased by 50 when compared to the same period last year.

Majority of these migrants are from Nigeria, Ivory Coast, Guinea,Senegal and Gambia, same as in 2016.

“So far in 2017, 19,567 migrants arrived by sea to Italy and after the latest shipwreck this past
weekend, 521 have died at sea – 50 more compared to the same period in 2016,” it said.

The migrants, according to the UN migration agency, revealed that their journey was far more dangerous than expected.

“Some of the migrants who made it to Europe and share their ordeal with the International Organization for Migration (IOM) reveal that their journey was far more dangerous than expected.

IOM said it is launching “Aware Migrants” campaign to inform migrants from Nigeria and 14 other countries, mostly in West Africa plus Tunisia and Egypt, about the dangers of migrating irregularly across the Sahara desert, Libya and the Mediterranean Sea.

“The campaign is launched in the target countries of transit and origin in Africa with social media, TV and radio spots,” it added.