Will more than 1 million refugees and migrants arrive in Europe by sea in 2016? (update)

From the AP:

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, an opposition group that closely monitors the conflict using activists on the ground, says the overall violence has decreased by 90 percent. It documented the death of 118 people in areas included in the cease-fire agreement in its first five days—a sharp drop from the daily toll before the truce. On Friday, it reported 12 people had been killed in Syria on Thursday—the lowest daily toll in 13 months.[1]

That’s really good news for Syrians, obviously. More to the point here, Syrians make up about half the total number of refugees and migrants entering Europe. A stable situation in Syria *might* mean a much lower number of refugees and migrants landing in the Northern Mediterranean – especially Greece. I’m holding off on changing my forecast until I have a better sense of how stable the situation in Syria is.

Having said all this, I’ve just learned that the number of refugees and migrants so far in March is already 5,340 – that’s roughly half of what it was for all of March last year in just 4 days[2].

[1] Quoted at http://www.slate.com/blogs/the_slatest/2016/03/04/deaths_down_90_percent_in_syria_truce_zone_group_says.html

[2] http://data.unhcr.org/mediterranean/regional.php

 

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