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Over 1 million refugees entered Europe in 2015 by sea: UN

31 December 2015 7:47


The United Nations says more than one million refugees have made perilous journeys by sea to make their way into Europe in 2015.

The United Nations Refugee Agency, also known as the UNHCR, released the figure on Wednesday, saying 1,000,573 people have arrived in Europe by boat during the year, including 844,176 in Greece and 152,700 in Italy.

The numbers are based on data provided by police and coast guard as well as estimates from refugee registration in Greece; information and estimates from government, police and the UNHCR in Italy; and police and government data from Spain and Malta, which reported 3,592 and 105 arrivals respectively.

Nearly 50 percent of the asylum seekers are from Syria and 21 percent from Afghanistan, two countries that are in the grip of deadly conflicts.

The UN refugee agency’s announcement came a week after the International Organization for Migration (IOM) said the total number of people entering Europe this year has surpassed a million.

More than 3,700 people were reported as dead or missing, the UNHCR said.

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