Boat Migrants Risk Everything for a New Life in Europe: African asylum seekers rescued off boats and taken aboard an Italy navy ship, June 8, 2014.

Boat Migrants Risk Everything for a New Life in Europe:  African asylum seekers rescued off boats and taken aboard an Italy navy ship, June 8, 2014.

African asylum seekers rescued off boats and taken aboard an Italy navy ship, June 8, 2014. Photographer Massimo Sestini accompanied the Italian navy on its rescue missions earlier this month, offering a rare up-close glimpse of the men, women and children who make the dangerous trip to start a new life. Eight months after a boat carrying hundreds of migrants sank off the coast of Lampedusa, killing more than 360 people and spurring an international outcry, the flow of migrants risking the perilous sea journey to Europe shows no signs of letting up. Already this year, the number of migrants arriving by boat on Italy?s shores has surpassed 40,000, the total number of migrants that arrived in 2013. Earlier this month, Italy said it rescued some 5,200 people in the span of just four days. Officials there warn that many more will die without broader support from across Europe. Tens of thousands of refugees and migrants make the journey to Europe annually, departing from dozens of countries in Africa and the Middle East, according to the European Parliament. In recent years, Syrians fleeing the civil war in their country have joined the ranks of Eritreans, Sudanese and Somalis looking for a better life, the UN said in April.

Credit: Massimo Sestini / eyevine

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