More than one million migrants and refugees reached Europe this year, including over 970,000 who made the dangerous journey across the Mediterranean Sea, the Newsmax website reports today (December 22, 2015).
About half were Syrians fleeing the country's brutal civil war, according to figures released today by the UN Refugee Agency and the International Organization for Migration (IOM).
"The number of people displaced by war and conflict is the highest seen in Western and Central Europe since the 1990s," the UN Refugee Agency said, referring to the conflicts in the former Yugoslavia that decade.
A total of 3,692 migrants died crossing the Mediterranean Sea this year, IOM said. Greece was by far the leading landing spot for migrants to Europe this year, with 821,008 arrivals, including 816,752 by sea.