Refugee and Migrant Children in Europe Accompanied, Unaccompanied and Separated - Overview of Trends, January - September 2017

Over 25,300 children arrived in Greece, Italy, Bulgaria and Spain between January and September 2017, of whom more than 14,800 (58%) were unaccompanied and separated children (UASC). Arrivals in the third quarter of 2017 increased by 33% compared to Q2 2017 (14,800 vs. 11,100).

More than 13,800 unaccompanied and separated children 92% of all children who arrived to Italy through the Central Mediterranean Route were UASC.

Over 9,800 children benefited from the EU relocation scheme in Greece and Italy by the end of September 2017, which is more than the total number of children relocated last year.
Among them, 329 were UASC.

Over 60% of all child claims in Europe were recorded in Germany (67,4000), Italy (16,000) and France 14,000) in the first nine months of 2017.

Arrivals to Europe between January and September 2017

Between January and September 2017, 25,379 children arrived in Greece, Italy, Spain and Bulgaria, of whom 14,839 (58%) were unaccompanied or separated children (UASC)2 . Arrival of UASC increased by 25% compared to the first half of 2017 (11,918).

Greece
Between January and September 2017, 7,2573 children arrived to Greece by sea, including 838 (11%) UASC.4 While this is 88% decrease compared to the same period in 2016 (62,136), the number of children arrived in the third quarter of 2017 (4,237) exceeded that of children who arrived in the first half of the year (3,020). This also included a sharp spike in the number of UASC registered in the third quarter (two-fold increase compared to the first half of 2017, when 411 UASC were registered). The majority of children arriving to Greece by sea were from Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan and Kuwait.

Italy
Among the 15,140 children who arrived to Italy between January and September 2017, 92% (13,867) were unaccompanied or separated. This is a 27% decrease compared to the same period in 2016 (19,000). The smaller numbers of UASC arriving this year is mainly due to the overall drop in the number of people crossing the Central Mediterranean since July 2017. Most of them originated from Guinea, Côte d'Ivoire, The Gambia and Bangladesh.

Bulgaria
Between January and September 2017, 552 children were intercepted at border crossing points and within the territory of the country. Among those, 28% were unaccompanied or separated children (154) which is 91% decrease compared to the same period in 2016. Most children were from Iraq, Syrian Arab Republic and Afghanistan.

Spain
Between January and September 2017, 2,430 children arrived to Spain by sea and land, most commonly from Morocco (962), Syrian Arab Republic (740) and Algeria (218).
Due to the increase in arrivals to Spain in the third quarter of 2017, the number of child arrivals also increased by 44% compared to the first half of 2017 (995). Data on unaccompanied and separated children is not available from the Spanish Ministry of Interior.

International Organization for Migration:

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