Lassana Bathily: Hero despite himself

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Before the hostages taking in Hyper Kosher (France), the young Malian, Lassana Bathily, was a perfect stranger, but it is no more the case.

The French and African media made of this immigrant, a national hero. Indeed, Lassana Bathily saved life of several people during the attack and succeeded in running away.

« When Coulibaly entered into the store, people came down and were running towards the basement saying that there was an armed madman. I quickly realized that the only exit was to hide ourselves in the freezer; then I put it off and I asked all to enter« , told Lassana on RFI.

His courage and will to save human lives were praised by the French president, François Hollande, and the Malian one, Ibrahim Boubakar Keita. Thousands of Internet users then asked the naturalization of the young Malian.

We propose you a brief summary on the young Malian life, realized by RFI.

It is at 16 years old that he (Lassana Bathily) arrives in France to join his father already settled down there for several years. « He arrives as everybody with a tourist visa. Then, he has stayed », explains his cousin, Sekou.

Illegal immigrant, Lassana will have hard time, the theartbreak to be far from her mother, brothers and sisters left behind in the country, but also the lack of money. He will owe his safety to a family of Malian workers where he gradually finds his way thanks to solidarity.

Courageous and volunteer, Lassana takes upgraded courses in French. In 2011, he obtains his resident permit. He will find a job, at first in the catering, then at Hyper Kosher around Vincennes.


Original text by: Roger ADZAFO

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