Number of refugees & illegal immigrants to Greece up by 40% in 2018, data shows

Most are from Afghanistan and Syria

Illegal immigrants and refugee flows from Turkey to Greece was almost 40% higher in 2018 compared to 2017, according to Frontex and the International Organisation for Migration (IOM).

In absolute terms, this rise translates into nearly 50,000 people who entered Greece, which is due to a spike in the influx of people via land routes on the border between Greece and Turkey at Evros.

A slight increase in arrivals via the sea was also observed.

According to IOM, the total arrivals in Greece in 2018 amounted to 49,158 people, when in 2017 the same number stood at 35,025.
Of the 14,000 more that arrived in Greece, 11,000 came from Evros, where arrivals more than tripled from 5,551 in 2017 to 16,657 in 2018.

At the same time, 3,000 more refugees and illegal immigrants reached Greece via sea in 2018 compared to 2017, (from 29,501 to 32,501).

In terms of nationalities, 27% of the arrivals were Afghans, 25% Syrians and 19% Iraqis. In total, refugees and illegal immigrants from 49 different nationalities were registered – among them Pakistanis, Cameroonians, Congolese and Turks who, the latter being the top nationality in numbers who cross into Greece via Evros, according to Frontex.