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29 January 2016

Migrant Arrivals in Europe in 2016 Top 55,000, Over 200 Deaths

Posted on Fri. Jan-29-2016

Greece - IOM estimates that 55,528 migrants and refugees crossed the Mediterranean to enter Europe during the first 28 days of 2016 - a rate of nearly 2,000 per day. The daily average is nearly equivalent to the total numbers for the month of January as recently as two years ago.

During the same period IOM has recorded some 244 deaths at sea, as well as at least a dozen more deaths of migrants and refugees who died either after reaching Europe or traveling to a launch point in Turkey. By comparison total deaths on Mediterranean Sea routes were 12 in 2014 and 82 last year.

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IOM helps survivors of the boat tragedy in Somalia last 8 January return home to Ethiopia. © IOM/Craig Murphy 2016

Ethiopian Survivors of Somalia Boat Tragedy Return Home

Posted on Fri. Jan-29-2016

Somalia - In early January a migrant boat left the northern coast of Somalia bound for Yemen. It carried 106 Ethiopian and Somali migrants who had trekked across large swathes of remote land on foot and by truck to reach the point of embarkation.

The boat was part of the large-scale smuggling business that facilitates the irregular migration of thousands of migrants to Yemen from the Horn of Africa each year. Over 90,000 migrants arrived in Yemen in 2015, and almost 90 per cent of them were from Ethiopia.

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For the latest Mediterranean Update data on arrivals and fatalities please visit: #MigrationEurope


A global database tracking data on deceased and missing migrants worldwide.
Visit #MissingMigrants

Migration in the News

  • Lebanon’s The Daily Star reported that IOM Director General William Lacy Swing called on Lebanon to join IOM during his first official visit to the country, citing the myriad benefits of greater cooperation.

  • Politico reported that private-sector activists are pushing their own solutions to Europe’s migration crisis to address what they say is an urgent need to act quickly where the EU and national governments have failed.

  • The Guardian reported that Germany will close its border to asylum seekers from Algeria, Tunisia and Morocco. It will also prevent migrants from bringing their families to join them for two years.

  • Al Jazeera reported that the torch relay for the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro will include a stop at a refugee camp in Athens, where a refugee will carry the torch.

  • Euronews interviewed Greek EU Affairs Minister Nikos Xydakis about an EU report that accuses Athens of failing to register refugees and migrants properly.

  • Thomson Reuters reported Doctors Without Borders (MSF) comments that the international community may be too focused on fighting ISIL militants in Iraq to see the country's 'overwhelming' humanitarian needs.

  • Sputnik reported comments by the Head of the Austrian Interior Ministry’s Department for Immigration Police that proven political persecution is the only factor that is taken into account in Austria for granting asylum – not country of origin.

  • New York Times and others reported that least 24 people died Thursday when a boat carrying migrants capsized off the Greek island of Samos in the Aegean.

Trending on the Internet

  • Xinhua reported that China is to give more support to rural workers to enable them to better integrate in cities and find employment.

  • BBC reported that under a Dutch plan designed to solve Europe’s migration crisis, migrants and refugees arriving on the Greek islands would immediately be sent back by ferry to Turkey.

Media Contacts

For comment / interviews on today's news, please go to the contact(s) listed at the end of each press briefing note.
For other information please contact the IOM Media & Communications team here