A total 2,724 migrants and refugees had arrived in Greece by March 8, IOM reports

The number of refugees and migrants arriving in Greece between January 1 and March 8 this year reached 2,724, the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) announced on Friday.

There were 1,521 arrivals in January and 1,091 arrivals in February during 2017, sharply down from the 134,048 people that arrived in the same two months in 2016.

A total 19,567 migrants and refugees arrived in Europe during the same period, with 80 pct of arrivals reported in Italy and the remaining 20 pct in Greece and Spain.

There were 521 deaths in the Mediterranean Sea in the period up to March 7, of which 477 died in the central Mediterranean, two in the eastern Mediterranean and 42 in the western Mediterranean. The number of deaths in the Mediterranean during the same period in 2016 was 471.