Lindsay Lohan visited a Syrian refugee family over the weekend in Istanbul, as well as a health clinic where her time with a paralyzed Syrian man brought her to tears.
“Lohan listened to the man’s life story and began to sob,” Abdurrahim Boynukalin, Turkey’s Deputy Minister of Youth and Sports, who accompanied the actress, told the state news agency Anadolu.
Lohan, 30, who arrived without fanfare in Turkey’s largest city last week, posted an Instagram photo of herself Sunday at the home of a refugee family.
“Meet the Hussein Family,” the actress wrote. “The father, Mohammad, was injured severely in Aleppo” — Syria’s largest city and one of the hardest-hit in the nation’s 5 1⁄2-yearlong civil war — “and his wife left him and her three kids after they migrated to Turkey. The lovely girl is Heya (9) and her twin brother is Leys. The Sultanbeyli Municipality is covering their rent and kitchen expenses but the conditions of the house are very bad. The older brother was not in the house with us because although he is 17, he had to work in order to take better care of his family. #theworldisbiggerthan5,” she concluded, using a popular regional phrase referring to what critics call the monopolized veto rights of the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council.
Her visit was coordinated by Istanbul’s Bosphorus Center for Global Affairs, an independent nongovernmental organization with the goal of bringing together disparate groups in order to foster communication and seek solutions to international issues.
The “Mean Girls” star joins Angelina Jolie, Salma Hayek and other celebrities who have journeyed to Turkey, Lebanon and elsewhere to draw attention to the plight of refugees fleeing Syria’s war. Anadolu said Turkey hosts the greatest number of refugees, 2.7 million. According to the Beirut-based Syrian Center for Policy Research, the conflict has killed more than 470,000 people.
“Let us start paying some attention,” Lohan wrote on Instagram in a previous post Sunday, and then quoted Mother Teresa: “Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.” She ended with the hashtags “#Start #helping the #refugees suffering in #Syria. As promised. #istanbul 🙏 stop #massacreinaleppo.”