There has been a drastic decrease of unauthorised migrants coming in to Europe, it is at its lowest in five years. However migrants entering into spain from the Mediterranean are still rising, EU border chiefs have claimed. The official border agency Frontex has said that last year migrants tried to cross Europe’s external borders without authorisation around 150,000 times, this was a 25 per cent drop from 2017.
The decline may have been due to the large fall in numbers of people entering Italy, mostly arriving from Libya and Algeria which number of over 23,000 last year. Since the height of the European refugee crisis the figures have suggested that migration patterns have altered. The crisis began in 2015 with a large number of people trying to vacate into Europe from south-eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Frontex said about 57,000 crossings were detected in Spain last year, double the figure for 2017.
Since 2015 Europe has seen well over a million migrants arrive into the EU, now the EU nations are arguing over how to manage the arrivals. This was Europe’s biggest influx of migrants and refugees since the second world war. The number of arrivals were avoided by three developments, the first development deal was the EU deal with Turkey in 2016. Under this deal migrants who were arriving in Greece would be sent back to Turkey if they did not apply for asylum or if their claim was rejected. The second development was that the new border fences were quickly erected in ten Balkan countries from Spain to Latvia. Lastly the third development was the 2017 deal which was signed between Rome and Tripoli, under which Rome agreed to send money, training and equipment to help Libya manage its borders.
The European Commission is giving €7 billion to member states for the period 2014-2020, for schemes such as improving reception centres and border controls. Frontex said that on the western Mediterranean route, Moroccan migrants are the most counted nationality, followed by Guineans, Malians and Algerians.The number of illegal border crossings detected on the eastern Mediterranean route increased by nearly a third to 56,000. This was mainly caused by a high number of migrants crossing the land border between Turkey and Greece.