PHOTOS: Grieving families receive remains of drowned migrants at Sulaimani airport

Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani received on Friday evening the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy.

ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) ­– Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani received on Friday evening the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy.

The migrant boat sank near the Island of Paxos on Jan. 11. Greek rescue teams managed to retrieve 21 people from calm seas during a search operation. They later recovered the bodies of 12 others, five of them who were from Sulaimani.

The bodies arrived at Sulaimani International Airport, as their mourning families shed tears of sorrow over the tragic deaths at sea.

Due to the war with the Islamic State and a years-long financial crisis in the Kurdistan Region and Iraq, many Kurds have fled to Turkey to find an immigration corridor into Europe.

However, a significant number of them have drowned while trying to cross the Aegean Sea between Turkey and Greece, often in makeshift boats ill-equipped to safely transport them.

The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) has in the past helped with the repatriation of the remains of those from the region who have perished in such circumstances. 

Editing by John J. Catherine

Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani receive the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy, Jan. 25, 2020. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani receive the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy, Jan. 25, 2020. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani receive the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy, Jan. 25, 2020. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani receive the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy, Jan. 25, 2020. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani receive the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy, Jan. 25, 2020. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani receive the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy, Jan. 25, 2020. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
PHOTOS: Grieving families receive remains of drowned migrants at Sulaimani airport
Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani receive the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy, Jan. 25, 2020. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani receive the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy, Jan. 25, 2020. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani receive the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy, Jan. 25, 2020. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani receive the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy, Jan. 25, 2020. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani receive the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy, Jan. 25, 2020. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani receive the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy, Jan. 25, 2020. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani receive the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy, Jan. 25, 2020. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani receive the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy, Jan. 25, 2020. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani receive the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy, Jan. 25, 2020. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani receive the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy, Jan. 25, 2020. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani receive the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy, Jan. 25, 2020. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani receive the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy, Jan. 25, 2020. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani receive the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy, Jan. 25, 2020. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
Grieving families in the Kurdistan Region's city of Sulaimani receive the bodies of five persons who recently died after a boat carrying them sank in the territorial waters between Greece and Italy, Jan. 25, 2020. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)