Another Migrant Boat Sinks in Mediterranean

WORLD

Dozens of migrants have drowned in the Mediterranean after a boat carrying an estimated 137 people sank south of Sicily. (BBC)

Use this excellent activity to better understand patterns of human migration in the Mediterranean basin and elsewhere.

Teachers, scroll down for a quick list of key resources in our Teachers’ Toolkit, including a link to today’s MapMaker Interactive map.

Today’s MapMaker Interactive map shows the approximate location and number of fatalities of shipwrecks of migrants in the Mediterranean over the past month. The second bookmark shows where undocumented immigrants are coming from, and the third bookmark highlights our map layer on asylum-seekers around the world.

Today’s MapMaker Interactive map shows the approximate location and number of fatalities of shipwrecks of migrants in the Mediterranean over the past month. The second bookmark shows where undocumented immigrants are coming from, and the third bookmark highlights our map layer on asylum-seekers around the world. Please customize this map as more information is documented, and with layers examining economics, climate, and even ocean currents.

Discussion Ideas

 

  • How many people are attempting to migrate to Europe?
    • According to the UN, this year, about 35,000 migrants have arrived by sea from North Africa. In 2014, about 220,000 crossed the Mediterranean.

 

  • Where are immigrants to Europe coming from? Take a look at the second bookmark on today’s MapMaker Interactive map for some help, or take a look at these tables from Frontex, the European border agency.
    • Overall, emigrants from Syria, Eritrea, Afghanistan, Kosovo, Mali, Albania, Gambia, Nigeria, Somalia, and unspecified sub-Saharan countries are seeking asylum or residency in the European Union.
    • By sea, people are immigrating from Syria, Eritrea, Afghanistan, Mali, Gambia, Nigeria, Somalia, the Palestinian Territories, Senegal, and unspecified sub-Saharan countries.

 

  • If most people are emigrating from Syria, why don’t they just go to Greece? It’s close to Syria.

 

  • How are immigrants migrating to Europe?
    • A $644 million human trafficking operation that some observers have compared to a “multinational corporation” provides routes, transportation, forged documents, and even local connections once migrants have safely made it to Europe.
    • Most smugglers depart for Italy from Libya or Tunisia, although many also try to cross (even swim) the narrow passage between Morocco and Spain.
    • Smugglers demand high prices for their services, and migrants are often required to hand over their money and passports before beginning the journey across the Mediterranean. “The Syrian migration flow changed the game as far as human smuggling was concerned in Sub-Saharan Africa, because the Syrians had more money to pay,” says one expert. “They were ready to put down several thousand dollars at a time, whereas the African migrants could never pay more than $200 or $300. Those groups that could respond to that need began to profit very quickly and they were making millions of dollars.”
    • In the final leg of the journey, smugglers have been blamed for crowding too many people on unsafe boats and rafts.

 

 

 

 

  • What happens if an immigrant is granted asylum?
    • A person granted asylum or status as a refugee is allowed to legally live and work in the host nation. Terms and conditions vary throughout the countries of the European Union.

 

  • What happens if an immigrant is not granted asylum?

 

  • How has the European Union responded to the recent deadly shipwrecks?
    • According to the BBC, “The latest deaths come as naval chiefs from 26 European countries are due to discuss the migrant crisis at talks in Naples, southern Italy.”
    • “EU nations agreed last month to triple funding for rescue operations run by European border agency Frontex, contribute more boats and patrol aircraft for rescue efforts, and look at ways to target smugglers’ boats with military strikes.”

 

 

TEACHERS’ TOOLKIT

BBC: ‘Dozens die’ as migrant boat sinks in Mediterranean

BBC: The Mediterranean’s deadly migrant routes (great maps and graphics)

Nat Geo: Migrant Shipwrecks in the Mediterranean map

Nat Geo: Global Patterns of Human Migration

CNN: Why migrants are risking their lives to reach Italy

BBC: Why is EU struggling with migrants and asylum? (great Q&A)

Vox: The right to asylum: Why Europe has to take in migrants fleeing persecution

(extra credit) BBC: Europe Migrant Crisis (great blanket coverage)

One response to “Another Migrant Boat Sinks in Mediterranean

  1. Pingback: Migrant Crisis Q&A | Nat Geo Education Blog·

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