The number of undocumented persons entering European Union countries last year was the lowest since 2013, according to the European Commission.
Based on data from the European Border and Coastguard Agency, Frontex, 139,000 migrants crossed the EU’s borders illegally in 2019. This was 6% less than in 2018 and a 92% drop compared to 2015, at the height of the migration crisis.
The biggest contingent last year were Afghans, whose number almost tripled in one year. They represented roughly a quarter of all undocumented migrants, and most entered Europe through the Eastern Mediterranean.
Generally, a marked increase in the influx of undocumented migrants through this area was observed last year, whereas the number of people trying to enter the EU through the Western and Southern Mediterranean has been on the decrease.