Aaron Callaghan is 'thankful to be alive' after Turkey incident

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Turkey flag on boatImage source, Leonid Eremeychuk/Getty Images

A north Belfast man who died in Turkey on Saturday has been described as an "absolute gentleman" by a friend who was taken ill alongside him.

Richie Molloy, 33, died in a "tragic incident" but it is not yet clear what caused his death.

His friends Aaron Callaghan and Declan Carson were taken to hospital, but Mr Callaghan said both are now recovering

Writing on social media, Mr Callaghan said he had "never been so thankful to be alive and breathing".

He said both he and Mr Carson were safe and "back on our feet," and he added that his thoughts and prayers were with the Molloy family.

"The most painful goodbyes are the ones that are never said and never explained," he said.

"Have never been so thankful to be alive and breathing, Richie you got us through it. RIP brother. A pleasure to share these memories with you," he added.

On Tuesday Colin Bell, from the Kevin Bell Repatriation Trust, a family-run charity that helps to bring the bodies of people who die abroad back to Ireland, said he had been in touch with Mr Molloy's sister Lydia.

He said it would take four or five days to bring him home.

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The Irish Department of Foreign Affairs said it was "aware of the case and providing consular assistance".

"The Department of Foreign Affairs has made contact with all three families and will be assisting them throughout the process."