The UN refugee agency has said more than 218,000 migrants crossed the Mediterranean in October, a record monthly tally this year and almost as many as in all of 2014.
The UNHCR said 210,265 people crossed the sea from Turkey to Greece alone last month and another 8,129 went from north Africa to Italy through October 29.
The agency estimates that about 219,000 migrants and refugees made those crossings last year.
Spokesman Adrian Edwards called the October figure “beyond anything that could have been expected even a few months ago”.
European Union pledges to relocate about 160,000 refugees, less than three-fourths of the October influx, shows the response is still far short of needs.
UNHCR estimates that more than 600,000 people crossed the Mediterranean this year.