How a Refugee Family Desperate to Get to Germany Was Smuggled from Syria to Greece

At least 350,000 refugees have illegally entered Europe so far this year.

— -- The scenes coming out of Europe are staggering.

There are children crawling under razor wire, people walking mile after mile under the blazing summer sun and whole families who have nothing but what they can carry on the move.

Throughout their journey, Batouol, 29, said she tried to stay strong for her kids and her husband. But when I asked her if she ever wanted to give up, she said, "Yes. I said, ‘Let's just go back to Syria.'"

In Izmir, you can tell the refugees right away from their anxious, weary faces and their massive packs. Most of the refugees, including Mohammed, headed straight to the neighborhood of Basmane to find smugglers to get them across to Greece.

The smugglers charge $1,100 for adults and half-price for children. For many, the cost is their entire life savings. And the risks in the open boats they will be smuggled in are unspeakable. This year more than 2,300 migrants have drowned in the Mediterranean trying to get to Europe.

Mohammed said while on the boat to Greece they were so scared it was going to be swamped they threw their belonging into the water. But despite the exhaustion, they made it to Greece with only a thousand miles or so left on their journey to Germany.

Though they have been through so much, they were bright and eager.

"We are look to the future," Mohammed told me. "A better future."