A 'shame counter' tracking deaths of refugees has been installed on a Barcelona beach


While Europe argues with itself over how best to approach the refugee crisis, people are dying every day trying to get across the Mediterranean Sea to something resembling safety.

A new installation has gone up at one of Barcelona's most popular beaches during the height of summer displaying a number that updates every time someone dies trying to make the journey. Below the figure it reads: "This isn't just a number, these are people."

Barcelona's new mayor Ada Colau, who was elected last year on a platform of ending the housing crisis, tackling unemployment and fighting corruption, said: "We're here to look the Mediterranean in the face and look at this number - 3,034 people who drowned because they were not offered a safe passage."

The Pew Research Centre says 2015 saw a record number of refugees applying for asylum in Europe, 1.3 million, which is almost double the previous high of 700,000 following the fall of the Iron Curtain in 1992. Worse still, the International Organization for Migration says the fatality rate this year is worse than for the same period in 2015.

If you'd like to help in some way, you can volunteer here, here and here, donate here or even offer a room in your home here.