UNHCR: 218,000 refugees reach Europe in October

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Almost as many refugees crossed the Mediterranean in October as for the whole of 2014, according to the UN Refugee Agency. Photo: UNHCR/Ivor Prickett.

Europe's refugee crisis continues, the UN said Monday, with latest estimates showing that a record 218,000 people crossed the Mediterranean Sea last month alone.

That's almost as many as for the whole of 2014, according to the UN Refugee Agency, UNHCR.

Greece continues to be the main landing point for the travellers, along with Italy, despite worsening weather and sea conditions.

Daniel Johnson has more.

Huge numbers of vulnerable people continue to risk their lives on perilous sea crossings to reach Europe, the UN Refugee Agency, UNHCR, said Monday.

Latest data shows that a record 218,000 people crossed the Mediterranean Sea in the month of October alone, despite worsening weather conditions.

That's almost the same number as for the whole of 2014, but way off the 744,000 refugees who've made the journey so far this year.

Greece is far and away the main point of arrival, followed by Italy.

Arriving almost exclusively from Turkey, and usually in unsuitable inflatable vessels, more than half of the refugees are Syrians.

Afghan nationals make up around one in five of those who make the crossing, followed by Iraqis and Eritreans.

According to UNHCR, which has called the Mediterranean route the most deadly route in the world, more than 3,400 people have been killed attempting the journey so far this year.

Around one in every four of the travellers are women and children.

Daniel Johnson, United Nations, Geneva

Duration: 1'06"

 

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