UN: Higher Percent Of Migrants Dying On Mediterranean In 2018

The report cites fewer NGO ships and increased patrolling from the Libyan Coast Guard for the increase.
Posted at 1:39 PM, Sep 03, 2018

A United Nations report says a higher percentage of migrants crossing the Mediterranean Sea are dying, despite fewer people making the trip. 

The report said one in 18 migrants died making the voyage in the first seven months of 2018. That's up from the same time last year, when one in 42 migrants died, according to the report. 

There are a number of factors for the increase. The report said fewer NGO ships are patrolling the sea, and the Libyan Coast Guard has stepped up their patrolling efforts. That's forced human smugglers to go to further lengths to try and get people from Africa to Europe; migrants are traveling longer amounts of time and further distances in overcrowded, unsafe vessels, according to the report. 

The report comes as European countries struggle to agree on how to address the ongoing migration issue. Southern so-called "frontline" states like Italy are refusing to take in more migrants, despite calls from international groups and Northern so-called "destination" states to do so.