The Address | Benghazi – Libya
GENEVA – 9,779 migrants and refugees have entered Europe by sea through 6 March, a 13 per cent decrease from the 10,715 arriving during the same period last year. Deaths on the three main Mediterranean Sea routes through almost seven weeks of the new year are at 229 individuals – or about one half the 464 deaths that occurred during the same period in 2018, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) reported.
IOM Rome’s Flavio Di Giacomo on Thursday reported a total of 335 migrants have arrived by sea to Italy in 2019, according to official Ministry of Interior figures. Just 60 migrants or refugees arrived in Italy in the month of February, the lowest one-month total in six years. Since 1 January, 855 migrants have been returned to Libya by the Libyan Coast Guard, according to IOM staff there.
IOM Spain’s Ana Dodevska reported that through 6 March, 5,156 men, women and children have arrived as irregular migrants since the start of this year – an average of about 80 per day. Through this period, irregular migrant arrivals by sea to Spain are about 53 per cent of all Mediterranean arrivals of this type; moreover, that total through just over nine weeks of 2019 is around 500 more arrivals than Spain saw through the all of the first four months of 2018, a period during which IOM reported 4,627 irregular migrant arrivals to Spain by sea, or just under 40 per day.
IOM Greece reported on Thursday (07/03) that from Tuesday (05/03) up to date, the Hellenic Coast Guard (HCG) reported at least three incidents requiring search and rescue operation off the islands of Samos and Farmakonisi. The HCG rescued a total of 69 migrants and transferred them to those locations.