Over 3,770 migrants died in 2015 while crossing Mediterranean
Jan 3, Geneva: With over 3,770 estimated deaths, 2015 has been the deadliest year on record for migrants and refugees crossing the Mediterranean, trying to reach Europe.
In comparison, approximately 3,270 deaths were recorded in the Mediterranean in 2014. Globally, IOM estimates that over 5,350 migrants died in 2015.
The deadliest month in 2015 was April when nearly 1,250 migrants died, mainly due to the worst tragedy on record involving migrants crossing the Mediterranean from North Africa, in which an estimated 800 migrants died when their overcrowded vessel capsized off the coast of Libya. Only 28 survivors were rescued and brought to Italy.
Seventy-seven percent of the deaths occurred in the Central Mediterranean route mostly used by smugglers operating from Libyan shores. This compares to 97 percent of migrant deaths recorded along this route in 2014.
In 2015, 21 percent of deaths occurred in the Eastern Mediterranean compared to only one percent in 2014. In the Central Mediterranean, deaths recorded were down by nine percent from last year with the rate of death at 18.5 deaths per every 1,000 travellers.
The Oslo Times