More than 3,000 people are said to have disappeared or died at sea trying to reach Europe over the course of the past year, according to statistics from the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR).
UNHCR figures state that 1,924 migrants have been declared dead or missing along the central and western Mediterranean migration routes, while the route to the Spanish Canary Islands has resulted in 1,153 deaths and disappearances.
The new figures, more than 3,000, are much higher than the 1,544 dead and missing people reported by UNHCR for the year before 2021, reports the EU-funded website InfoMigrants.
So far in 2022, a total of 478 people have been reported missing or dead at sea, according to UNHCR.
UNHCR spokeswoman Shabia Mantoo commented on the ongoing tragedy: “The sea journey from West African coastal states such as Senegal and Mauritania to the Canary Islands is long and dangerous and can take up to 10 days, adding : “Many ships have gone course or disappeared without a trace in these waters.”
Three arrested after 25 migrants were allegedly thrown to their deaths overboard from a smuggling boathttps://t.co/WqcHEiTgLD
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) April 6, 2022
Since 2013, there have been more than 20,000 migrants who have been reported missing or dead at sea in the Mediterranean alone, with a total of 5,143 missing at sea in 2016, the highest year ever recorded.
People smugglers organize the dangerous boat trips, often for considerable sums of money, but sometimes they are also directly involved in the deaths of the migrants themselves.
In April, three human traffickers were arrested in the Spanish Canary Islands following allegations that they had caused the deaths of 25 migrants by throwing them into the sea where they drowned. In some cases, the sadism of human traffickers runs deep, with desperate individuals who believe they can buy their way across Europe’s weak borders through traffickers being tortured, raped and killed by the people they paid to move them. .
Now, some are warning that 2022 could see the largest number of migrants trying to enter Europe illegally since the height of the migrant crisis in 2016, even with Ukrainian refugees discounted from the numbers.
Frontex, the European Union’s border agency, stated last month that they recorded at least 40,000 illegal entries into the EU between January and March this year alone, a figure 57 percent higher than the same period in 2021.
Italy arrests four human traffickers, one of them linked to the deaths of four migrants, including a womanhttps://t.co/NnQnYhvXc2
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) January 15, 2022