Last week, 19 people died in the Channel of Sicily. In 2014, a total of 3,279 migrants lost their lives trying to make the journey. In spite of the already heavy death toll and the crisis showing no signs of abating, European leaders have been unable to come to a consensus in regards to the best way of tackling the migrant problem.
Of those who died attempting the perilous journey on rickety boats packed to the brim, the majority perished in the Channel of Sicily on the central Mediterranean route connecting Libya and Italy, according to the latest IOM report.
“It is unacceptable that in the 21st century people fleeing from conflict, persecutions, misery and land degradation must endure such terrible experiences in their home countries, not to mention en route, and then die on Europe’s doorstep,” said IOM Director-General William Lacy Swing.
In May, EU foreign and defense ministers voted in favor of a military mission against the smugglers currently making high profits out of smuggling hundreds of people a day into European territory.
But as war rages on in Syria, and poverty and conflict continue to plague a number of African countries, the initiatives proposed by EU officials so far have proved ineffective against the increasing number of people willing to risk everything for a new beginning in Europe. Read more…