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Undocumented immigrant who saved toddler is French national hero

Undocumented immigrant who saved toddler is French national hero

Amazed passersby saw Mamoudou Gassama climbing up what appears to be four stories with his bare hands, and in approximately 30 seconds reaching the child, who was suspended over a balcony, holding on with his hands.

A man on the fourth floor was leaning across another balcony struggling to hold on to the child.

On his arrival in France in September 2017 after travelling the Mediterranean migrant route, Gassama was given a mattress on the floor in a room occupied by his 54-year-old brother Birama and three relatives from his home village of Yaguine in western Mali.

Two weeks later - after six years of struggling to secure legal residency in France - Mr Bathily was given a medal and a French passport by then President François Hollande. The man next door leaned over the wall of the balcony and tried to keep the child, but it was evident that he did manage to bad.

Mamoudou Gassama scales the outside of the building to reach the child.

Speaking to reporters, Gassama said he had acted without thinking.

"As a foreigner I am really pleased", he said. "I went out, I ran to look at the solutions to save him, I managed to catch the balcony, I climbed like this and thank God I saved him".




The report went on to say Mr Gassama had moved to France only months earlier in search of somewhere to build his life.

The boy hangs from the building. The family of the boy has also thanked Mr. Gassama, with the grandmother telling local media that he is truly a hero.

The act even earned him an invite to the presidential palace, where he met French president Emmanuel Macron.

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 charges that have been levied against the father mean that should he be convicted, he could be imprisoned for up to two years.

"The father left the apartment [to go] shopping and then chose to play Pokémon Go in the street which took a little time before he returned home", Mr Molins said. The whereabouts of the child's mother were unclear.

"We'll obviously be setting all your papers straight and if you wish it, we will start the process of naturalisation so that you can become French", President Emmanuel Macron told him.

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