Mediterranean Migrant Arrivals Reach 44,957 in 2018; Deaths Reach 972

Geneva – IOM, the UN Migration Agency, reports that 44,957 migrants and refugees entered Europe by sea in 2018 through 27 June, with just around 38 percent arriving in Italy and the remainder divided between Greece (29%) and Spain (33%). A small number of arrivals have been reported landing this year to Cyprus and Malta, 47 and 234 migrants, respectively, or less than 1% of all Mediterranean Sea arrivals.

The latest total for all route compares with 94,986 arrivals across the region through the same period last year, and 230,230 in 2016.

IOM Athens’ Antigoni Avgeropoulou reported Thursday that there were at least four incidents requiring search and rescue operations off the islands of Lesvos, Samos, and Kos. The Hellenic Coast Guard rescued 91 migrants off the island of Lesvos and 111 migrants off the island of Samos, for a total of 202 migrants who were transferred to those respective islands.

Another 12 migrants were reported arriving between 25-27 June. Through that date the total number of sea arrivals to Greek territory since January 1 is 13,157 (see chart below).

For the month of June, nearly twice as many migrants have arrived by sea to Spain than to Italy, nearly three times as many as have arrived in Greece.

IOM Madrid’s Ana Dodevska reported Thursday that total arrivals at sea in 2018 have reached 14,953 men, women and children who have been rescued in Western Mediterranean waters through 27 June. Nearly half of that total—6,791 people—arrived only in the past 27 days (see charts below).

Worldwide, IOM’s Missing Migrants Project has recorded 1,659 people who died or went missing while migrating in 2018. In the Mediterranean alone, at least 972 people have lost their lives at sea since the beginning of the year (see chart below).

Since earlier this week, Missing Migrants Project has recorded the deaths of 10 more people on the US-Mexico border that occurred in May and June.  All of these migrants were recovered in Texas, except for one, a man between 30 and 35 years old, whose remains were found after a drowning in the Rio Bravo near Reynosa, Mexico. 

Five migrants also died in vehicle accidents in Southern Europe this week.  Two men from Bangladesh died in a car crash between Radovish and Shtip, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.  Seventeen others survived.  In Greece, three people died and seven survived in a crash on the Egnatia highway, near Alexandropoulis.

Missing Migrants Project 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 migrants’ deaths and disappearances are collected, click here.

Download the Latest Mediterranean Update infographic 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:
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:
Ivona Zakoska, IOM Regional DTM, Austria, Tel: +43 1 5812222, Email:
Julia Black, IOM GMDAC, Germany, Tel: +49 30 278 778 27, Email:
Christine Petré, IOM Libya, Tel : +216 29 240 448, Email :
Ana Dodevska, IOM Spain, Tel: +34 91 445 7116, Email:
Myriam Chabbi, IOM Tunisia, Mobile: +216 28 78 78 05, Tel: +216 71 860 312 (Ext. 109), Email: