An increasing number of migrants are making the perilous journey across the Mediterranean sea in a desperate attempt to reach Europe. Escaping war, violence and persecution, many are making the dangerous crossing in unseaworthy boats and dinghies. Thousands have died this year already while trying to reach the relative safety of European shores.

On World Refugee Day – marked on 20 June – here are some key facts and statistics about the unprecedented crisis playing out on our doorstep.

refugee crisis
Syrian Kurdish refugees are rescued by Greek fishermen after their boat sank off the island of Lesbos Aris Messinis/AFP

Sources: International Organisation for Migration, UN Refugee Agency