Malian immigrant praised for heroic rescue in Paris

30 May, 2018, 20:20 | Author: Carlos George
  • VIDEO Paris'spiderman scales building to rescue dangling toddler

He left the child alone while he shopped, then lingered to play Pokemon Go, Prosecutor Francois Molins told BFM-TV. His mother was out of town.

According to Molins, the father, who now faces up to two years in prison for abandoning his parental responsibilities, is devastated by the consequences of his actions.

Amateur video footage shows 22-year-old Mamadou Gassama being cheered on by spectators as he, in a stunning display of heroism, pulled himself up from balcony-to-balcony to the building's fourth floor, where the child was dangerously hanging.

Following the rescue, Gassama was invited to the presidential Elysee Palace by Macron, where he received a gold medal for courage and devotion.

Gassama's heroic act was caught on video and went viral on social media.

Hailed as the "Spiderman of Paris", Mr Gassama, 22, has since been offered French citizenship by President Emmanuel Macron, who awarded him a certificate of bravery for his life-saving efforts. Sounds like Gassama will be putting those scaling skills to good use.

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"I just didn't have time to think, I ran across the road to go and save him", he told Macron, according to BBC. "And thank God, I saved him", said Gassama. Paris mayor Anne Hidalgo praised the young migrant on Twitter for his "act of bravery" as well as phoning him personally to "thank him warmly". I got out, I saw the child who was about to fall from the balcony.

Gassama told Macron that he arrived in Italy in 2014 after more than a year in Libya, where he was arrested and beaten, "but I wasn't discouraged". "The more I climbed the more I had the courage to climb up higher, that's it". The boy had left the island to join his father in the French capital a few weeks ago, with the mother and couple's second child due to join them in June, reports the BBC.

"I did it because it was a child", he is quoted as saying by the paper.

Macron's government has cracked down on economic immigrants in particular and has doubled the amount of time authorities can detain newcomers.

"I like children, I would have hated to see him getting hurt in front of me", Gassama said.

She said her prayers and gratitude go out to Mr Gassama.

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