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UNHCR Europe situations: Data and trends - Arrivals and displaced populations (December 2021)

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ARRIVALS TO EUROPE

In December 2021, some 9,800 refugees and migrants arrived in Europe via the Mediterranean and Northwest African maritime routes, a 34% decrease compared to November, while overall arrivals in 2021 (123,300) increased by 29% compared to last year (+27,500 people).

Arrivals in Italy decreased by 52% in December compared to November this year, in line with seasonal trends. Out of some 4,500 refugees and migrants who arrived in Italy in December, 46% had departed from Libya, 29% from Turkey and 20% from Tunisia. In December, arrivals in Italy from Libya decreased by 63% compared to November, and arrivals from Turkey decreased by half. Some 1,400 refugees and migrants who departed from Libya in December were intercepted or rescued by Libyan authorities and disembarked back in Libya, 58% fewer than in November⁶. According to available data, most people departing from Libya in 2021 were from Bangladesh, Egypt, and Eritrea, while people arriving in Italy from Tunisia originated mainly from Tunisia, Cote d'Ivoire, and Guinea. In addition, some 134 refugees and migrants arrived by sea in Malta this month, following search and rescue operations.
Of the 4,200 refugees and migrants who arrived in Spain in December (on par with last month), 63% arrived in the Canary Islands. Arrivals in the Canary Islands in December (2,624) decreased by 25% compared to November (3,508). The overall number of arrivals in Spain in 2021 through both the Western Mediterranean and Northwest African maritime routes was in line with last year.

Some 700 refugees and migrants arrived in Greece by land and sea in December, a similar number as in November. The overall number of arrivals in Greece in 2021 was 43% lower compared to last year, as allegations of pushbacks at land and sea borders continued. Turkish authorities reported rescuing or intercepting some 2,600 refugees and migrants at sea in December, a 28% decrease compared to November (3,600). In addition, nearly 200 refugees and migrants arrived by sea in Cyprus this month, 29% less compared to November (249).