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Afghan refugee freezes to death after illegally crossing into Turkey from Iran

An Afghan refugee died Thursday after being found in a remote region of eastern Turkey, hospital sources said.

The man, identified as Mohammed Qasim, died in hospital in Erzurum after being found close to death by security forces in the province of Van, where temperatures regularly fall to around minus 15C (5F) at night in the winter.

He is thought to have crossed into Turkey from Iran with a group of fellow Afghans.

“We are experiencing such things here as provinces like Erzurum are on the migration route,” Erdal Güzel, chairman of Erzurum Development Foundation, told Anadolu Agency.

Van province is located on the Iranian border, where peaks of more than 1,500 meters (4,900 feet) tower over Lake Van.

Turkey has accepted more than 2.4 million Syrian refugees since the civil war began but large numbers of refugees from Iraq, Iran and Afghanistan also cross into the country.

Turkey offers temporary shelter to Afghan refugees rather than permanent relocation under the 1951 Geneva Convention on the Status of Refugees. (ANADOLU AGENCY)

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