Aylan Kurdi in a beach in Turkey

125 years in prison for those responsible for the child Aylan Kurdi’s death

The image of the lifeless body of little Aylan Kurdi lying on a beach in Turkey raised in 2015 global awareness about the drama of Syrian refugees fleeing to Europe.

Three of the members of the gang dedicated to human trafficking that organised the trip where the little Aylan Kurdi died in 2015, whose image of his lifeless body lying on a beach in Turkey became an icon that woke up the consciences around the world about the drama of Syrian refugees trying to flee to Europe have been sentenced to 125 years in prison each by a Turkish court.

The sentence was issued on March 13th after the human traffickers were captured by Turkish security forces in Adana province, in the south of the country. Several defendants, including both Turkish and Syrian citizens, had already been sentenced to prison for the events, but the three persons sentenced now were in search and capture after fleeing.

The three now sentenced by the Bodrum Supreme Criminal Court (Muğla) were each one condemned to 125 years behind bars on the charge of “full intentional homicide”, as the court considered that they were aware of the serious risk that refugees were facing by trying to reach the Greek islands in such precarious conditions.

The image of little Aylan lying lifeless in the sand travelled the world and woke consciences, especially in neighbouring Europe, even despite it was for a brief period of time. Three members of the Kurdi family died when their boat sank in the Aegean trying to reach the Greek island of Kos. In 2015 alone, UNICEF estimates that at least 185 children drowned trying to reach Greek territory.