Mediterranean Migrant Arrivals Reach 13,043 in 2018; Deaths Reach 497

from International Organization for Migration
Published on 23 Mar 2018 View Original

Geneva – IOM, the UN Migration Agency, reports that 13,043 migrants and refugees have entered Europe by sea through the first 80 days of 2018, with about 47 per cent arriving in Italy and the remainder divided between Greece (30%) Spain (22%) and Cyprus (less than 1%).

IOM Rome’s Flavio Di Giacomo said Thursday Italy has received no new arrivals of irregular migrants from North Africa since the weekend. Total arrivals for the year to date remain at 6,161, which is 70 per cent below last year’s total – 20,685 men, women and children – at this time and 58 per cent below the total for arrivals (14,792) in 2016 (see chart below).

OM Libya’s Christine Petré on Thursday reported that this week (20 March), IOM assisted 152 migrants to return home to Niger on one chartered flight. Among the passengers were six medical cases. IOM Libya has assisted 10,790 since the scale-up phase started on 28 November 2017 and 4,551 migrants have received Voluntary Humanitarian Return assistance since the beginning of the year.

IOM Spain’s Ana Dodevska reported Monday that total arrivals by sea in 2018 have reached 2,887 men, women and children who have been rescued in Western Mediterranean waters through 22 March. That compares with 2,426 through all of March 2017.

Dodevska noted that migrants to Spain this year are overwhelming adult males, mainly from Sub-Saharan Africa, with only 8 per cent female adult and 4 per cent minors (see chart).

Worldwide, IOM’s Missing Migrants Project has recorded 782 migrant fatalities in 2018, compared with 1,200 at this time last year. In the Mediterranean alone, 497 migrants are estimated to have died this year, down from 635 at this date in 2017 (see chart below).

Most recently, the remains of a migrant were recovered on 18 March from a beach in Rota, Spain. In the past month, three bodies which are not associated with any known incident have been found in this area (one on 25 February, one on 8 March, and one last Sunday, 18 March). These deaths add to the growing list of people who have died trying to cross the Mediterranean to reach Spain this year.

Additionally, the MMP team learned of one death on the US-Mexico border from early March: the remains of a young man were found on 7 March on the Río Bravo in Hidalgo County, Texas.

MMP data are compiled by IOM staff but come from a variety of sources, some of which are unofficial. To learn more about how data on missing migrants are collected, click here. For latest arrivals and fatalities in the Mediterranean, please visit: Learn more about the Missing Migrants Project at:

For more information, please contact:

Joel Millman at IOM HQ, Tel: +41 79 103 8720, Email:
Mircea Mocanu, IOM Romania, Tel: +40212115657, Email:
Dimitrios Tsagalas, IOM Cyprus, Tel: + 22 77 22 70, E-mail:
Flavio Di Giacomo, IOM Coordination Office for the Mediterranean, Italy, Tel: +39 347 089 8996, Email:
Hicham Hasnaoui, IOM Morocco, Tel: + 212 5 37 65 28 81, Email:
Kelly Namia, IOM Greece, Tel: +30 210 991 2174, Email:
Julia Black, IOM GMDAC, Germany, Tel: +49 30 278 778 27, Email:
Christine Petré, IOM Libya, Tel: +216 29 240 448, Email:

International Organization for Migration:
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