In its publication, Asylum Trends, UNHCR estimated that in 2014 the world’s industrialized countries would witness the highest number of asylum applications in approximately 20 years. Seeking basic human security, migrants and refugees are fleeing areas experiencing extreme poverty, armed conflict or political and social unrest.
Facilitated by networks of human traffickers and smugglers, more and more migrants are embarking on dangerous journeys across the Mediterranean Sea in an effort to reach Europe. In 2013, three times as many migrants arrived in Italy by sea compared to 2012, and in January 2014, that figure was nearly 10 times what it had been the year prior.
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