'A new beginning of life': Alan Kurdi's family set to arrive in Vancouver on Monday

Relatives of Alan Kurdi, the Syrian boy whose lifeless body was photographed washed up on the shores of a Turkish beach earlier this year, will start a new life in Canada on Monday, when they finally arrive in Vancouver.

See Full Article

As they prepare to start their new lives in this country, they say they hope his death won't be in vain.

Alan Kurdi's aunt, Tima Kurdi, said while the tragedy has been very painful for the entire family, she hopes it serves as a reminder to the world of the plight of refugees fleeing violence.

Tima Kurdi spoke to CTV News Channel on Monday, as she prepared for the arrival of her brother, Mohammed Kurdi, his wife and their five children. She will be sponsoring her brother and his family, who are set to arrive in Vancouver on Monday as refugees.

"Even though the tragedy was very painful for us, it's opened the doors for others -- that's what counts," she said of Alan Kurdi's death. "I hope his death won't be in vain."

The three-year-old boy drowned in September along with his older brother and their mother while attempting to cross the waters between Turkey and Greece. Images of his lifeless body, face-down in the sand, helped show the world the plight of the hundreds of thousands who've fled Syria and Iraq for safety.

Alan Kurdi's father, Abdullah Kurdi, attempted the dangerous water crossing after the Canadian government rejected his brother Mohammed's original refugee application. Canadian officials said the application didn't have the required documentation.

Citizenship and Immigration Canada later asked Tima Kurdi to re-apply for her brother, Mohammed Kurdi, and his family in mid-October.

She said she's overwhelmed at the thought that she will at last be reunited with her brother.

"I'm happy, I'm sad… I'm really speechless. I don't know what else to say," she said. "I'm happy for them; to give them a safe place and a home -- a new beginning of life."

Tima Kurdi said the entire family of seven will join her family of three in their Vancouver home. "We have enough room, and I did my best, me and my husband and my son. We made it nice and comfy," she said.

Her other brother and Alan Kurdi's father, Abdullah Kurdi, declined to come to Canada and now lives in Kurdistan.

Tima Kurdi said after losing his wife and children, Abdullah Kurdi has devoted his life to helping other refugees.

Syrian refugees have been arriving in Canada on a near-weekly basis since the start of December. The Liberals have held to their pledge to take in 25,000 refugees by the end of February, after admitting that they’d likely fall short of a target to settle 10,000 by the end of the year.

Tima Kurdi said she understands the anxiety and worry many of the new arrivals will have, as they face the immense task of starting from scratch in a new country.

However, she said, they should be comforted to know that they've come to a good place.

"Canadian people have big hearts," she said. "They should start a new life, and try to build their life and work hard to start it."

With files from The Canadian Press



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Strong earthquake near Osaka, Japan, causes scattered damage

    World News CTV News
    TOKYO -- A strong earthquake shook the city of Osaka in western Japan on Monday morning, causing scattered damage including broken glass and partial building collapses. There were no immediate reports of injuries. The quake with a preliminary magnitude of 5.9 struck around 8 a.m. Source
  • 5 dead as SUV chased by U.S. Border Patrol crashes in Texas

    World News CTV News
    BIG WELLS, Texas -- At least five people are dead and several others hurt as an SUV carrying more than a dozen people crashed while fleeing from Border Patrol agents in South Texas. Dimmit County Sheriff Marion Boyd says the SUV went out of control at more than 100 mph and overturned on Texas Highway 85, ejecting those inside. Source
  • Alberta mosque set ablaze in 'brazen' attack

    Canada News CBC News
    A mosque in Edson, Alta. was set on fire late Saturday night shortly after a small group of people left the building after evening prayers. The three people who were praying inside had left the mosque and were still in the parking lot when a fire started at the building's south entrance at around 11 p.m. Source
  • Alberta mosque set ablaze in 'brazen' arson

    Canada News CBC News
    A mosque in Edson, Alta. was set on fire late Saturday night shortly after a small group of people left the building after evening prayers. The three people who were praying inside had left the mosque and were still in the parking lot when a fire started at the building's south entrance at around 11 p.m. Source
  • Dogs saved from Korean meat farm are recovering well in Montreal shelter

    Canada News CTV News
    MONTREAL -- The 50 terrified dogs and puppies rescued from crammed cages on a South Korean dog meat farm are well on their way to becoming pets in Canada, Humane Society International said. The dogs -- which include terrier crosses, Jindo mixes and Labrador mixes -- were recovered with the help of animal advocates in Korea and transported to a Montreal emergency shelter last week. Source
  • N.B. First Nation chief says his election points to progress

    Canada News CTV News
    FREDERICTON -- The new leader of a New Brunswick First Nation said he's proud to be elected as the first openly LGBTQ chief in Atlantic Canada -- though he said he's more well-known in his community for his leadership skills and creativity. Source
  • New opera tells little-known story of Canadian nurses killed in WWI boat sinking

    Canada News CBC News
    A new opera tells the story of the Llandovery Castle, a Canadian hospital ship that was torpedoed by a German U-boat during the First World War, taking hundreds of lives — including those of 14 nurses. Source
  • Hundreds of children wait in Border Patrol facility in Texas

    World News CTV News
    MCALLEN, Texas -- Hundreds of children are waiting away from their parents inside a Border Patrol holding facility in South Texas, with groups of 20 or more children to a single cage. There are bottles of water, bags of chips, and large foil sheets intended to serve as blankets. Source
  • Toronto police charge man in death of woman he allegedly met online

    Canada News CTV News
    Toronto police have charged a Brampton, Ont., man with second-degree murder after a woman was found dead in her apartment Tuesday. Police say 41-year-old Richard Isaac has been arrested in connection with the death of 28-year-old Victoria Selby-Readman. Source
  • Man faces murder charge in death of Toronto woman he met online: police

    Canada News CTV News
    A man has been arrested and charged with murder after a 28-year-old woman he allegedly met online was found dead in a downtown Toronto apartment building on Tuesday, police say. Richard Isaac, 41, of Brampton, Ont. Source