Recent data released by the Greek Ministry of Migration and Asylum recorded a 154% increase in migration flows to Greece during the first quarter of 2024, compared to the same timeframe last year.

The influx in irregular arrivals to the east Mediterranean country has been the highest since 2019, and was pronounced in the Evros prefecture in northeast Greece, and the islands of the eastern Aegean.

Specifically, according to the report, 11,835 irregular migrants arrived in Greece in April 2024, a 166%-increase from the 4,660 arrivals in April last year.

There was also a 12%-increase of arrivals between March 2024 (2,231) and April 2024 (2,493).

Asylum applications also increased by 57% in April 2024 (4,329) from the same month last year (2,766).

The most asylum applications were received in Evros (585), on Samos (539), in the north Attica township of Malakasa (507) – due to a migrant/refugee camp within its boundary – on Kos (488),  Lesbos (402) and on Chios (281) – the latter three islands facing the opposite western Turkey coast, where numerous migrant smuggling gangs operate.

Migrant temporarily residing on the Greek islands increased by 95% between April 2023 and April 2024, while the total number of migrant residents increased by 70% within the specified timeframe.