13:13 GMT30 May 2020
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - A total of 10,308 migrants and refugees arrived in Europe by sea in 2019, while 234 individuals died on their way to the continent, the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) said Friday.

    Spain has become the most popular destination among migrants, accounting 5,222 of sea arrivals, Greece ranked second with 4,483 arrivals, while Italy became third with 335 arrivals, according to IOM.

    READ MORE: Number of Asylum Seekers in EU Decreased by Half Compared With 2015 — Eurostat

    Over 12,300 migrants reached Europe by sea over the same period last year. At the same time, 466 migrants died.

    However, a fresh report from the Eurostat revealed that the number of asylum seekers in the European Union registered in 2018 is down 11 percent from 2017 and has shrunk by more than half compared to the peak year 2015 when the worst refugee crisis since World War II struck the European continent. As the data shows, the number of applications last year was close to those in 2014. The document called Germany, France, Greece, Spain, Italy and the United Kingdom as the most attractive destinations for asylum-seekers.

    READ MORE: Number of Asylum Seekers in EU Decreased by Half Compared With 2015 — Eurostat

    Since 2015, Europe has been experiencing its worst migration crisis in recent history, struggling to accommodate hundreds of thousands of refugees and migrants fleeing hostilities in Middle Eastern and North African countries.

    READ MORE: EU Confirms $1.7Bln for Refugee Facility in Turkey — Foreign Policy Chief


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