UK
07/09/2015 05:59 BST | Updated 07/09/2015 12:59 BST

Aylan Kurdi: Egyptian Billionaire To Name 'Refugee Island' After Drowned Syrian Boy

The Egyptian billionaire offering to buy an island to shelter fleeing refugees plans to name it after the Syrian toddler who was found washed up on a Turkish beach last week.

Naguib Sawiris, who has urged Greece or Italy to sell him an island in the Mediterranean, announced the news on Twitter.

Should it come to fruition, 'Aylan Island' will commemorate the three-year-old Syrian-Kurd, whose lifeless body spurred as a wake-up call to the refugee and migrant crisis occurring in Europe.

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Aylan Kurdi (left) and his older brother Galip (right), who also perished in the sea

Aylan and his family were among two boats of refugees who were travelling to the Greek island of Kos from the Turkish town of Bodrum. The boats sank early on Wednesday last week.

The boy's older brother Galip, 5, and mother Rihan also perished in the journey. His father Abdullah has returned to Kobane to bury his family.

naguib sawiris

Egyptian Telecoms billionaire Naguib Sawiris is believed to be worth $2.9billion

Sawiris, a Telecoms billionaire who is believed to be worth $2.9billion, has tweeted his thanks for those who support his plans for the island.

Announcing the proposed name, he wrote: “I found a name for the Island ‘ILAN’ [sic] the young Syrian child thrown on Turkish shore by the sea to remind us! Now I need to find the island!”

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A Turkish gendarmerie soldier moves the body of Aylan Kurdi

And on Monday Sawiris tweeted an appeal to all volunteers wanting to help create Aylan Island to email him their proposals.

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