Europe migrant tally to reach the 1m mark by Tuesday

The IOM says 80 percent the migrants will have crossed from Turkey into Greece, most being Syrians.

FILE: Migrants and refugees wait to cross the border between Greece and Macedonia near the Greek village of Idomeni on 21 November 2015. Picture: AFP

JOHANNESBURG - Refugee and migrant arrivals by sea and land into Europe, from Africa and the Middle East this year will top the one million mark next week.

The Geneva-based International Organisation for Migration (IOM) says 80 percent of these will have crossed from Turkey into Greece and most of them are Syrians.

IOM spokesman Joel Millman says roughly 4,300 people arrived from the Turkish coast to nearby Greek islands on the busiest International Migrants Day yet.

It brought the total of refugees to 990,761 this year.

The agency reckons that despite the ever colder temperatures and dangerous sea conditions, the one-million mark will be reached by Tuesday.

This is more than that four times the total of about 240,000 crossings by land and sea into Europe last year.