Vancouver : Relatives of Alan Kurdi, the Syrian boy whose lifeless body was photographed washed up on the shores of a Turkish beach earlier this year, arrived in Canada on Monday.
Mohammed Kurdi, his wife and their five children arrived at Vancouver’s airport shortly before noon. They were greeted by his sister and sponsor, Tima Kurdi, and a small crowd of well-wishers waving miniature Canadian flags, CBC News reported.
The family became popular around the world after photographs circulated showing the body of three-year-old Syrian refugee Alan Kurdi, who died alongside his five-year-old brother and mother as they tried to reach Greece by boat.
Tima Kurdi wiped away tears as she greeted her relatives at the airport’s arrival gates.
“Thank you to the Canadian people,” she told a crowd of reporters gathered around the family. “Thank you to Prime Minister Trudeau for opening the door and showing the world how everyone should welcome refugees and save lives.”
Speaking through his sister, who translated from Arabic, Mohammad Kurdi also thanked Canadians and their government for making his dreams come true. Mohammad is Alan’s uncle while Alan’s father Abdullah, who is now in Iraq’s Kurdistan region, declined to come to Canada.
The photo of the body of Alan Kurdi washed up on a Turkish beach has become the defining image of the Syrian refugee crisis.