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Migration flows towards Europe have changed: in 2024, there will be more migrants in Spain than in Italy

Migration flows towards Europe have changed: in 2024, there will be more migrants in Spain than in Italy

Whether this was due to the Mattei Plan – and thus to potentially greater cooperation between the countries of origin – or to the “deterrence” policies of the Interior Ministry or to other factors independent of government activity, it is certain that the landings in Italy collapsed. At the same time, the Spanish coasts witnessed a significant increase in the number of arriving migrants. This is what was revealed by data collected by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. According to reports that take into account the period from January 1 to May 12, 2024, the number of arrivals by sea to our country amounted to 17,996 people: 60% less than in the same period of 2023. Instead, this year Madrid had to manage Migration flows of 20,771 people Individuals who entered the country via sea routes: +181% compared to the first part of 2023.

Migrants arriving on Italian shores – these data cover the period between January and March inclusive – are 76% men, 5% women, 4% accompanied minors, and 14% unaccompanied minors. The geography of origin is also changing: the three largest countries of origin this year are Bangladesh, Syria and Tunisia, while in 2023 departures were mainly from Ivory Coast, Guinea and Pakistan. The Italian region that had to prepare itself the most to manage the flows is Sicily, where 14,852 people were disembarked. It is followed by Emilia-Romagna, the first landing of 743 migrants, and Puglia, with 560 arrivals.

In comparison, Spain has seen this leap forward – it is the country most affected by landings among the EU member states bordering the Mediterranean – mainly due to the route that starts in northwest Africa and ends in the Canary Islands. 16,594 migrants have arrived in the Atlantic Ocean archipelago since the beginning of the year, an increase of +334% compared to the same period of the previous year. However, the Western Mediterranean Route, which ends on the southern coast of Spain, also saw an increase in crossings: 4,177 arrivals by sea between 1 January and 12 May 2024, an increase of +17% compared to the same months of 2023. Finally, UNHCR The UN High Commissioner for Refugees report notes that Greece is the third country in the Mediterranean region of Europe that recorded the highest number of landings: 14,814 in this first part of the year. Followed by Cyprus with 4,074 arrivals, and Malta with 68.

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