Racist attack on drowned refugee child Aylan Kurdi

Drowned Aylan Kurdi on a Turkish beach

From daily The Morning Star in Britain:

Canada: Aylan Kurdi‘s aunt slams ‘disgusting’ cartoon

Saturday 16th January 2016

THE aunt of drowned Syrian toddler Aylan Kurdi slammed French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo on Thursday for printing a racist cartoon comparing him to the refugees accused of molesting women in Cologne.

Most of the Cologne accused are not refugees.

The cartoon, in the latest edition of the magazine, counterposes the heart-rending image of the boy’s body washed up on a Turkish beach last year with two ape-faced men chasing screaming women.

The caption asks: “What would little Aylan have become if he had grown up? A bum groper in Germany.”

Aylan’s Canadian-resident aunt Tima Kurdi, who pleaded in vain with her adopted country’s former Tory government to grant the family asylum, called the caricature “disgusting.”

“I hope people respect our family’s pain,” she told CBC News. “It’s a big loss to us.”

“We’re not the same anymore after this tragedy. We’re trying to forget a little bit and move on with our life. But to hurt us again, it’s not fair.”

Four more children were found dead yesterday in the Aegean sea.

With a foul attack on Aylan Kurdi, the three-year-old boy whose drowning last year off the coast of Turkey became a symbol of the terrible human costs of the war in Syria, France’s satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo joined the growing racist campaign against Middle East refugees in Europe: here.

In a brief editorial published Wednesday, the New York Times solidarizes itself fully with the government of Chancellor Angela Merkel as it exploits the media hysteria whipped up over alleged sexual harassment attributed to immigrants in Cologne, Germany in order to mount a crackdown against refugees fleeing the successive and ongoing imperialist wars in the Middle East: here.

WASN’T Charlie Hebdo once something to do with the left, loosely a product of a previous upsurge of social struggle many years ago? Yes it was. So were Sir Oswald Mosley, Benito Mussolini, Georges Sorel… So, I am afraid that that excuse is no mitigation and that the long screeds which point to anti-Establishment articles the publication has run in the last half-century are fundamentally misplaced: here.

9 thoughts on “Racist attack on drowned refugee child Aylan Kurdi

  1. 15-year-old Masud suffocated in the back of a truck in a desperate bid to reach his sister in Britain. He had escaped the Taliban, got to Europe, lost his parents, and was on the final leg to reach refuge. Instead he died alone, terrified.

    If the UK had opened their doors to this child seeking safe haven, and upheld the law, this tragedy would never have happened. Authorities estimate over 7,000 unaccompanied children like Masud fleeing conflict right now in Europe! Without support they are forced to scale barbed wire fences to freedom, or fall in with traffickers. But we can help them.

    Avaaz has teamed up with refugee experts who are bringing a legal case demanding the UK government allow two children to reunite with their family in Britain. If we win it will set a precedent in the courts, and roll out actions across the EU to support these kids with legal assistance, shelter, and psychosocial care, then help them join family members.

    In a civilised, humane world, no child would face this terror. Let’s try and build that world today. Chip in to back this groundbreaking legal case and launch a plan to stop tragedies like Masud’s

    Masud was living in the Calais refugee camp where thousands of asylum seekers who have fled war and misery are now encamped, in dreadful conditions, desperate to get to Britain. Calais has become the poster child of the refugees’ misery and Europe’s unwillingness and inability to deal with a crisis that has seen a million risk drowning in the Mediterranean to reach Europe just last year.

    The only way to curb the chaos is by offering families legitimate routes to safety. EU law states refugees may claim asylum in any country where they have relatives, but the law is not being upheld and often asylum seekers, especially children, don’t know about their rights. That’s where we come in.
    If we are able to raise enough together our community could work to:

    bring cases to court across the EU to set legal precedents so governments are forced to give these children sanctuary;
    identify and legally assist children to reunite them with family members who are settled in Europe;
    provide protection, psychosocial care, and shelter to them while their cases are being processed;
    and campaign to draw attention to their cases to ramp up public and political pressure for refugee protection.

    The story of refugees can feel out of control and like there is no solution to this magnitude of human suffering, but while this programme won’t solve the whole crisis, it can tangibly help save the most vulnerable of victims from the underbelly of smuggling, and more trauma.

    Chip in now — these kids have suffered enough already and are right now alone, their parents are dead, missing or far away, and their only choice is wait in cold and dangerous camps, or risk their lives clambering onto trucks or trains often to their death. Let’s help them find a new life, free from fear.

    Our community has done incredible things to help refugees over the last year, providing funds for life-saving search and rescue in the Mediterranean and transport across Europe, sending aid to Greek islands, and campaigning for the EU, US, Australia and Canada to improve their refugee policies. Let’s now do all we can to help these children finally get to safety.

    With hope and determination,

    Alex, Christoph, Antonia, Emma, Marigona, Risalat and the whole Avaaz team

    Further information:

    Calais ‘Jungle’: anger over fate of child refugees denied UK asylum hearing (The Guardian)

    Calais refugee camp filled with people that feel ‘forgotten’ (CBC News)

    Calais migrant crisis: Young asylum seekers face lengthy legal battles to stay in Britain (The Independent)

    Christmas in the Jungle: Heartbreaking pictures of migrant children living in squalor in Calais camp (Daily Mail)


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