MORE THAN 3,654 MEDITERRANEAN MIGRANTS HAVE SO FAR DIED THIS YEAR

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About 3,654 people have died so far this year trying to cross the Mediterranean Sea to Europe. These include five bodies recovered on Wednesday, when an Irish navy ship encountered a rubber boat and rescued 118 survivors off Libya.

The International Organization for Migration (IOM) disclosed that 319,711 migrants and refugees entered Europe by sea in 2016 through 19 October, arriving mostly in Greece and Italy. Some 168,857 people have arrived in Greece and 145,381 in Italy during 2016.

The total is well below the number of arrivals at this point in 2015, when over 650,000 migrants and refugees had made the journey.

The body, however, said that some 3,654 people died between January and October this year, trying to make the crossing.

By comparison, deaths through 21 October 2015 stood at 3,138 – 2,822 of them on the Central Mediterranean route between North Africa and Italy.

Meanwhile, IOM continues to support the European Union (EU)-backed scheme to relocate migrants and refugees from Greece and Italy to other EU member states continue.

To date, 6,243 individuals have been relocated. Of these, 4,852 have left Greece (153 to Belgium, 21 to Bulgaria, 10 to Croatia, 42 to Cyprus, 12 to the Czech Republic, 57 to Estonia, 430 to Finland, 1,762 to France, 196 to Germany, 69 to Ireland, 95 to Latvia, 147 to Lithuania, 104 to Luxembourg, 24 to Malta, 629 to the Netherlands, 410 to Portugal, 284 to Romania, 3 to Slovakia, 60 to Slovenia and 344 to Spain).

Another 1,391 have left Italy (29 to Belgium, 9 to Croatia, 10 to Cyprus, 322 to Finland, 231 to France, 20 to Germany, 8 to Latvia, 40 to Luxembourg, 46 to Malta, 226 to the Netherlands, 183 to Portugal, 43 to Romania, 23 to Slovenia, 50 to Spain, 39 to Sweden and 112 to Switzerland).

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