GENEVA (APP) – Some 168,000 migrants and refugees made the perilous journey across the Mediterranean to Europe in September, marking the highest monthly figure on record, the United Nations said Friday.

“In September, 168,000 crossed the Mediterranean. That’s the highest monthly figure ever, and almost five times the number seen in September 2014,” UN refugee agency spokesman Adrian Edwards told reporters.

He said the September figure was more than two thirds of the total number of arrivals in 2014, when 219,000 migrants and refugees crossed the Mediterranean to Europe.

So far this year, almost 530,000 people have made the voyage, with nearly 400,000 of them arriving in Greece and 131,000 arriving in Italy.

Around 3,000 people have died attempting the journey since January.