Syrians, Afghans, Iraqis. The mass exodus of refugees fleeing violence, bombs, gunfire and the Islamic State is the highest number since world war II. Since this past spring, the number of refugees crossing the small greek island Lesvos towards central Europe has been steadily increasing, and even though weather is getting worse, the flood does not seem to stop. With more than 1,000 new arrivals every day this small island has become the new gateway to Europe. Although the Turkish coast is only 10km across the Aegean, the going rate charged by smugglers is around $1,200 and each news of another sinking adds to the death toll in this stretch of the Mediterranean. People are making the journey because they have no choice. Most are from Syria, others from Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia and Eritrea – refugees from war, persecution, violence and human rights abuses. Desperation and fear drives them.