The heart-wrenching image of Aylan Kurdi, a 3-year old refugee who drowned off Turkey’s Bodrum coast on Sept. 2, has been picked as one of TIME magazine’s top 100 photos of 2015.
“A paramilitary police officer investigates the scene before carrying the lifeless body of Aylan Kurdi, 3, after a number of migrants died and others were reported missing when boats carrying them to the Greek island of Kos capsized near the Turkish resort of Bodrum on Sept. 2, 2015,” the caption of the photo read.
Doğan News Agency photo-reporter Nilüfer Demir said in an interview that she was petrified when she encountered the boy’s lifeless body lying on the sand.
“At that moment, when I saw the 3-year-old [Aylan] Kurdi, I was petrified,” said Demir, adding that she had no other option but to do her duty as a journalist and snap a picture of his body.
The picture of Kurdi – who was initially identified as Aylan Kurdi in news reports – lying on the sand as if he was sleeping hit media outlets and social media around the world, with many people voicing their anger at Europe’s lack of action on the plight of refugees, particularly from Syria.