Mediterranean Migrant Deaths Top 5,000 – IOM

Mediterranean sea

The International Organisation for Migration (IOM), on Friday reported no fewer than 100 migrants are thought to have drowned in two shipwrecks in the Channel of Sicily late Thursday.

IOM said the current number has brought the total number of fatalities in the Mediterranean this year to over 5,000.

Reports say IOM is still waiting for confirmation of the exact number of deaths in the two latest incidents.

However it indicated that 4,913 confirmed drowning have been recorded since January.

While the number of fatalities this year is much higher than in 2015 (3,771 deaths), the number of arrivals in Europe is much lower.

According to statistics, 358,403 migrants and refugees have reached European shores so far this year, down from over one million in 2015.

Most of those who have reached Europe in 2016 did so in Italy (179,525 arrivals) and Greece (173,244).

A further 5,445 and 189 entries have been documented in Spain and Cyprus respectively.

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