Desperate Migrants Risk Everything in Deadly Mediterranean Crossings

Getty Images photographer Chris McGrath recently spent about two weeks with crew members aboard the Migrant Offshore Aid Station (MOAS) Phoenix vessel as they patrolled the Mediterranean between Italy and Libya. During several missions, the crew rescued hundreds of migrants, some from capsized vessels—and recovered dozens of bodies from the sea. The United Nations estimates that more than 65,000 migrants have arrived in Europe this year so far from Africa and the Middle East,  about one-third as many as arrived in 2016 by the same date. The large part of that decrease is due to tighter restrictions nearly cutting off migrants entering through Greece. As migrants move to other, more dangerous routes, the death toll has climbed to more than 1,500 so far this year—more than 2016, despite the significant decrease in overall numbers.

Read more
Hints: View this page full screen. Skip to the next and previous photo by typing j/k or ←/→.

Most Recent

  • Clive Mason / Getty

    Sparks Fly on F1 Racetracks

    In 2015, a rule change in Formula One racing brought titanium skid blocks back, in turn bringing about the return of the occasional bright rooster tail of sparks.

  • Alexandra Beier / Getty

    Oktoberfest 2018: Photos From the Opening Weekend

    The 185th Oktoberfest beer festival opened in Munich this weekend, and organizers are expecting more than 6 million visitors over the next two weeks.

  • Shamil Zhumatov / Reuters

    Photos of the Week: Grassy Biker, Welsh Surfer, Chilean Pups

    A White Walker roams Northern Ireland, flooding threatens parts of the U.S. and Mali, a Japanese satellite visits an asteroid, American bison are raised in Mexico, and much more

  • Mahmud Hams / AFP / Getty

    Photos: 25 Fridays of Protest in Gaza

    For nearly six months now, Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip have been staging weekly demonstrations along the border between Gaza and Israel—protests they call the “Great March of Return.”