Traffickers of Syrian toddler Alan Kurdi, who became face of refugee crisis, get 125 years in prison

The two-years-old Alan Kurdi was photographed lying face down, off the Turkish coast, sent shock-waves around the world

A Turkish court sentenced three human traffickers involved in the case of the drowning of Alan Kurdi, along with his older brother and mother, to 125 years imprisonment on Friday, March 13. Alan Kurdi, a two-year-old Syrian refugee became the face of the global refugee crisis, after being photographed washed off the Turkish shore.

Along with his five-year-old brother Galip, Kurdi and mother Rehen drowned in September 2015. Their traffickers were captured earlier this week in the southern Turkish province of Adana. They were on the run, fleeing trial.

Alan Kurdi's traffickers imprisoned for 125 years

Alan Kurdi

The Bodrum High Criminal Court in Mugla found the men guilty of "killing with eventual intent". Three of them were sentenced to 125 years imprisonment, Turkey's Anadolu Agency reported. As many as twelve refugees, including eight children, who sought to flee the war-torn Syria and cross the Mediterranean sea, drowned that day. They were on a journey to reach Greek islands, but their boat capsized and all of them drowned.

Alan's family was trying to reach their relatives in Vancouver, Canada. Now, the boy's father, Abdullah, is the only surviving member of the family. After the demise of his wife and two children, he took their bodies to Kobani, Syria, for burial.

Syrian war crisis

Since the start of civil war in Syria, in 2011, about seven million refugees have fled the war-torn nation to seek refuge in Europe and North America. Several refugees embarked on a perilous journey, many of them dying on the way.

According to Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, the Syrian war since 2011 has led to the death of 384,000 people, including 116,000 civilians. The war started with an Arab Spring-inspired pro-democracy movement against dictator Bashar al Assad, followed by an intense government crackdown. War intensified with the involvement of other countries from the region and beyond, followed by the establishment of the Islamic caliphate in 2014 by Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi.