MONTREAL, Dec 29, 2015:
Relatives of Aylan Kurdi — the toddler whose limp body was photographed on a Turkish beach, becoming a heartbreaking symbol of the Syrian refugee crisis — arrived on Monday in Canada where they hope to rebuild their lives.
Canadian media showed the boy’s aunt Tima Kurdi, who now lives in Vancouver after emigrating to Canada in 1992, in tears as she welcomed her brother Mohammed, his wife Ghousun and their three children, at the airport.
“Thank you to the Canadian people,” Kurdi said.
“Thank you to our Prime Minister (Justin) Trudeau for opening the door and showing the world how everyone should welcome refugees and save lives. Thank you very much for doing this.”
The refugee policy became a political issue some months back, when the Canadian government earlier was accused of refusing asylum to some members of the family who since drowned. Ottawa said it never received the applications.
Trudeau’s Liberal government has pledged to resettle 25,000 Syrian refugees by the end of February.
The prime minister earlier this month personally welcomed the first group to arrive at the Toronto airport aboard a military transport plane.