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Rome Reports

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More than 1 million refugees arrived in Europe by sea in 2015

This is how more than a million refugees have come to Europe during 2015. According to UNHCR, almost half of them come from Syria, about 21 percent from Afghanistan and 8 percent from Iraq. ADRIAN EDWARDS UNHCR "This is a staggering increase over just 12 months. At the end of 2014 we had 219 000 arrivals on the Mediterranean to Europe, this was also a record. This is almost 5 times that level. Unfortunately we are also seeing an increase in the total of deaths, almost 4 000 lives lost in 2015.� The faces of terror in the children and the tears in adults begin to be part of our daily lives as the wars in their home countries remain unresolved. ADRIAN EDWARDS UNHCR "Sadly the underlying causes of these movements which are the conflicts we are seeing in this world are not going away. Therefore, we expect more people to arrive in 2016. And that too means that there has to be a lot more work in finding sustainable solutions to the situation.� About 80 percent of these people have come to Greece, especially the island of Lesbos. But many are also heading towards the island of Lampedusa in Italy. Much like these survivors traveling on a boat that caught fire in the middle of their voyage. UNHCR estimates that 25 percent of the 1,000,573 people are children.The refugee agency of the UN calls for international protection for such persons, as most are fleeing war, violence or religious persecution. AC/YA Unifeed SV -PR Up: YA