(Brussels) “Over 285 thousand migrants rescued by EU operations in the Mediterranean since February 2016; in 2017, over 2 thousand migrants were rescued in the desert after being abandoned by traders”. Today, the European Commission supplied those two figures, too, while depicting the migration phenomenon and relevant challenges for EU countries, with a view to the European Council in March. The Commission illustrated the “progress made within the European agenda for migration”, and “described the key measures to be taken”, in compliance with the December 2017 roadmap of the Commission, in order to reach a global agreement in terms of migration by June 2018. “Decrease in the number of irregular arrivals was confirmed throughout 2017 and in the first months of this year”, said the college in Brussels. “Our operations are going on saving human lives, facing the deep causes of this phenomenon, protecting external borders of Europe, and further strengthening cooperation with international partners. However, since the general situation is delicate, more efforts will be necessary by all EU member countries. More financial resources will also be necessary, in order to ensure a continuous and effective response to the challenge of migration”.