A. Summary of the current situation
As of 8 February 2017, there have been 11,233 new arrivals to Greece, Italy and Bulgaria, as countries of first arrival to Europe, including more than 9,000 to Italy. This is an increase for Italy of almost one third against the same period in 2016.
The average number of daily arrivals to Greece in January was 42. There has been a sharp increase in the number of deaths this year, with 255 people dying at sea since January 2017. More than 4,200 people in total died in the Mediterranean in 2016. The number of migrants from Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan has decreased while the number of migrants from Africa, particularly Nigeria and Eritrea, has increased. The total number of migrants and refugees stranded in Greece and in the Western Balkans is 74,909. The number of stranded migrants in Greece is approximately 62,000.
There is a backlog in processing asylum applications in Europe with 56 per cent of applications pending for at least six months. In Germany, there are as many as 745,545 asylum applications registered - only 280,000 relate to new arrivals in Germany. The rest are from 2015.
Since the launch of the Regional Emergency Appeal, a migration surge capacity response team has been integrated into the IFRC’s Regional Office for Europe (ROE) structure to ensure an effective implementation of the population movement operations. The surge team is comprised of members with experience in operations management and disaster response, health, water and sanitation and hygiene promotion, information management, emergency communications, community engagement and accountability, protection, logistics, resource mobilization, finance and planning, monitoring, evaluation and reporting.
The following table indicates the operations launched to respond to the migration crisis in Europe which have been supported by IFRC technical delegates through this Regional Appeal. Two of the Emergency Appeals have concluded while for the National Societies from Greece, Italy, Turkey and Serbia, the Appeals will continue due to the continued emerging needs of migrants/refugees in the countries.
Summary of the current response
The migration surge team has been supporting National Societies responding to the migration crisis through workshops, trainings, monitoring visits and technical support and guidance especially in the areas of protection, community engagement and accountability (CEA) and psychosocial support among others. The following map summarizes the team’s activities in the region.