A picture is not always as it seems.
On Sunday, CNN International anchor Hala Gorani tweeted a photo of a Syrian boy crossing the desert to Jordan. The striking image of the 4-year-old was widely shared around the Web. But it wasn't long before details of the photo became jumbled, leading many to mistakenly assume the boy was wandering the desert or fleeing Syria alone.
— Hala Gorani (@HalaGorani) February 17, 2014
Though Gorani reported that 4-year-old Marwan had crossed the desert alone, he was actually not far from his family. As it turns out, Marwan's family was standing a few feet away when the photo was taken.
@HalaGorani Erm UNHCR just told me his family was 20 steps ahead of him.
— Shiv Malik (@shivmalik1) February 17, 2014
United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) representative Andrew Harper confirmed that Marwan was reunited with his family at the Jordanian border. He also clarified that the 4-year-old became "separated" from his family while crossing the desert from Syria to Jordan with a group of refugees but was not "alone."
— Andrew Harper (@And_Harper) February 18, 2014
The image of the Syrian boy crossing the desert may have been taken out of context, but the photo still epitomizes the Syrian refugee crisis. According to the UNHCR, there are currently 2,442,593 registered Syrian refugees -- 573,425 of whom made the trek across miles of desert to cross the border into Jordan.
Last week, President Barack Obama announced plans to renew a five-year aid package to help Jordan with the influx of refugees.