According to the report by Philippe Fargues, the director of the Migration Policy Centre in Florence, the relative decline of the risk should be attributed to "intensified search and rescue operations of the Italian Navy" and the change of routes chosen by asylum seekers.
"The 250-500-kilometer [155-310-mile] route from Libya to Italy has been changed to a route of 10 to 20 kilometers between Turkey and the Greek islands of the Dodecanese," the report published in the monthly bulletin of the National Institute of Demographic Studies (INED) said.
According to the report, some 3,400 migrants died while en route across the Mediterranean sea out of around 1 million which attempted to cross the sea to Europe in 2015. Around the same number of deaths occurred in the Mediterranean in 2014 – over 3.000 – while only 200,000 managed to cross the sea that year.
Almost 170,000 people arrived in the European Union via the Mediterranean Sea in January-March 2016, eight times more than during the same period of 2015, the International Organization for Migration said Friday.