Afghan woman freezes to death near Turkey-Iran border
Footage taken by villagers showed that the feet of the woman were wrapped with plastic bags, and the hands of the surviving children were covered in their mother’s socks.
The shocking incident took place in the village of Belasur in Iran.
An unnamed Afghan woman tried to enter Turkey with her two children, ages 8 and 9. But she succumbed to the freezing cold and died.
Residents found the two children and the body of their mother. It was seen that the mother had given her socks to protect her children’s hands from the cold and covered her own feet with plastic bags.
The eastern province of Van’s governor’s office made a statement about the sad incident.
“On Jan. 1, some social media accounts shared photos of a mother with two children trying to cross the border, where the mother froze to death, but her children survived by taking shelter in a village,” the statement said.
“There was no incident reported to Turkish law enforcement units. After a deep investigation, it has been determined that this sad event did not take place in our [Turkish] soil,” it added.
Residents of Belasur handed the children to Iranian soldiers safely.
According to the U.N. refugee agency (UNHCR), Afghans make up one of the largest refugee populations worldwide.
There are 2.6 million registered Afghan refugees in the world, of whom 2.2 million are registered in Iran and Pakistan alone. Another 3.5 million people are internally displaced, having fled their homes searching for refuge within the country.
On Aug. 20, 2021, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said that Turkey is hosting around 300,000 documented and undocumented Afghan refugees, adding Ankara has been putting in the necessary effort for Afghanistan’s development and will continue to do so.