For the fifth year in a row, more than 1,500 men, women and children have died attempting to make the treacherous journey across the Mediterranean, the United Nations International Organization for Migration has reported.
The IOM said 1,504 people have died this year, with more than half of those deaths occurring since June 1.
"Deaths in the Western Mediterranean in recent months have reached devastating levels, with 304 fatalities recorded by the Missing Migrants Project between January and 25 July 2018, far outpacing the 124 recorded in the equivalent period of 2017–and the 224 recorded as drowned or missing during all of last year," IOM said in a statement posted online.
On the deadliest route, between Libya and Italy, as many as one in 19 people who tried to make the crossing did not survive, according to IOM.
The IOM said that 55,001 migrants and refugees had survived the journey across the Mediterranean to Europe. The total is nearly half that of the number recorded around this time last year, which was 111,753. In 2016, the numbers were even higher, with 250,000 people arriving in Europe by sea.