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Rights Group calls for more Refugees in Europe on First Death Anniversary of Syrian Toddler Aylan Kurdi’s Death

Since Kurdi’s death, though, more than 4,000 people have died trying to cross the Mediterranean – including hundreds of children – which Egeland called unacceptable

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Map of Europe. Image Source: Wikimedia commons.
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August 31, 2016: This week marks the one-year anniversary of the death of a Syrian toddler Aylan Kurdi, whose body washed up on a beach in Turkey, and whose photograph sparked an outpouring of support around the world.

Now, the Norwegian Refugee Council, a human rights group based in Europe, is using the anniversary of the iconic photo to call on European leaders to “stop the loss of lives” on their doorstep.

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“One year after the death of Aylan Kurdi the haemorrhage of human lives on the doorstep to Europe has worsened,” Jan Egeland, head of the NRC. “European leaders promised action and countries promised to fulfil their moral responsibilities. But instead of building bridges they have built walls, and instead of taking their share of responsibility, they have participated in a race to a bottom.”

Representational Image of Refugees. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons.
Representational Image of Refugees. Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

According to the International Organization for Migration, European countries combined took in more than 1,000,000 refugees during 2015, but still, Egeland said this isn’t good enough and wants to see more refugees settled in Europe.

“European civilisation, or lack thereof, is defined by how we receive persecuted human beings seeking our protection,” he said.

The photo of the toddler, shown lying face down on the Turkish shoreline as the waves rolled in and out, led to a massive spike in donations to charities and NGOs that help refugees and asylum seekers obtain food, clothing and other goods.

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Save the Children, a U.K.-based child advocacy group reported a 70 percent increase in donations in the 24 hours after the picture was published, while the Migrant Offshore Aid Station, which operates independent rescue boats in the Mediterranean, saw 15 times as much money donated in the 24 hours after the photo was published than any other 24-hour time period in the past.

Since Kurdi’s death, though, more than 4,000 people have died trying to cross the Mediterranean – including hundreds of children – which Egeland called unacceptable.

“European leaders must do more to prevent new tragedies,” he said. (VOA)

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Scientists Creating Hybrids To Save Rhinos From Extinction

Scientists say they're several steps closer to perfecting a method for saving the northern white rhino from extinction

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A keeper walks with a female northern white rhino as she is let out of her pen to graze at the Ol Pejeta Conservancy in Kenya, Dec. 2, 2014. VOA

Scientists say they’re several steps closer to perfecting a method for saving the northern white rhino from extinction.

Writing in the journal Nature Communications, researchers said Wednesday that they had succeeded in creating embryos using frozen northern white rhino sperm and eggs from a southern white rhino.

Scientists Creating Hybrids To Save Rhinos From Extinction
Scientists Creating Hybrids To Save Rhinos From Extinction. Pixabay

It’s the first time such hybrid embryos have been created, and the scientists from Europe and the United States hope it will provide a pathway to saving the northern white rhino subspecies, of which only two females remain.

Also read: Captive Rhinos face metabolic disorders despite nutritious food

They plan to harvest the females’ egg cells soon and produce “pure” northern white rhinos to be borne by a southern white surrogate in three years. They’re also working on a second method that would see sperm and eggs produced from preserved cells of northern white rhinos. (VOA)