More than 50,000 people have died on migratory routes since 2014
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More than 50,000 people have died since 2014 on migratory routes, most of them trying to reach Europe, but countries of origin, transit and destination have done little to prevent this situation.

According to a report published today by the International Organization for Migration (IOM), the number of fatalities on migratory routes began to be counted eight years ago, when the Missing Migrants Project of the IOM was created, which regrets the “little action” of Governments to “address the ongoing global crisis of missing migrants”.

“Although thousands of deaths have been documented on migration routes, very little has been done to deal with the consequences of these tragedies, much less to prevent them”, says co-author of the report Julia Black, quoted in the document by the agency led by the Portuguese António Victorino. “Regardless of the reasons that lead people to migrate, no one deserves to die in search of a better life”, adds the author

More than half to and within Europe

More than half of the 50,000 documented deaths took place on routes to and within Europe, with the Mediterranean Sea claiming at least 25,104 lives.

Africa emerges as the second deadliest region for migrants, with more than 9,000 deaths documented on the continent since 2014. However, investigations carried out regionally indicate that this global number is almost certainly far below the actual figures.

On the American continent, in turn, almost seven thousand deaths were documented, most of which on routes to the United States (4,694), and, only on the land border with Mexico, more than four thousand deaths have been accounted for by the IOM since 2014 .

Another 6200 deaths were recorded in Asia, and it is in this region that children account for the largest share of deaths on migratory routes: 11%.

Of the 717 children killed accounted for, more than half (436) were refugees from the 5ohingya Muslim ethnic minority.

The IOM also warns of the number of migrants killed but never identified, noting that more than 30,000 people registered in the Missing Migrants Project have “unknown nationality”, which indicates that there are thousands of families waiting indefinitely for answers.

According to the report of the agency that integrates the United Nations system, in western Asia at least 1315 people died when trying to reach a new destination, many of them in countries at war, making it almost impossible to verify their identity.

“The obligations of international law, including the right to life, must be fulfilled at all times”, stresses the IOM in the report, arguing that joint work is needed to prevent and reduce the number of migrant deaths.

“Priority must be given to search and rescue operations, improve and expand regular and safe migration routes and ensure that migration policies defend the protection and security of people”, he concludes.

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