More than 80,000 refugees arrived in Europe in first week of 2016

The UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) on Friday said that more than 80,000 refugees and migrants have arrived by boat in Europe during the first six weeks of this year, with more than 400 people having died making the journey, UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric told reporters here.


“Despite rougher seas, harsh winter weather, and numerous hardships endured upon arrival, the Agency says that more than 2,000 people a day continue to risk their lives and the lives of their children attempting to reach Europe,” Dujarric said at a daily news briefing here.

boatUNHCR hopes that European Union (EU) member states will implement at a faster pace all EU-wide measures agreed upon last year, including the implementation of hotspots and the relocation process for 160,000 people already in Greece and Italy, he said.

“More needs to be done to reinforce reception capacities at the points of entry to Europe, to allow for the humane and effective accommodation, assistance, registration and security screening of people arriving every day,” Dujarric said.

“The Agency also says that within the context of the necessary reduction of dangerous sea arrivals, safe access to seek asylum is a fundamental human right that must be protected and respected,” he said.

Also, ahead of a summit of Central European leaders next week in Prague, UNHCR is urging them to show greater solidarity with desperate refugees who seek sanctuary in the continent, he added. Enditem

Source: Xinhua

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