You must have seen Spiderman climbing walls on his own and saving lives of people on big screens and appreciated it believing it to be superhero fantasy. How about meeting a real-life Spiderman? In Paris, 22-year-old Mamoudou Gassama climbed up four storey building to save the life of a child, just like a superhero.

This might sound like a stunt scene from a Hollywood film, but Gassama, an undocumented Malian migrant, climbed up to the fourth floor of an apartment block in the Paris’ 18th arrondissement in less than 40 seconds on Saturday afternoon to rescue the life of a child. In that split second, Gassama, 22, did not think of himself or the threat of discovery and deportation back to Mali. Instead, in an extraordinary feat of strength and bravery that has earned him the nickname “Le Spider-Man”, he pulled himself up from balcony to balcony, before lifting the crying four-year-old to safety.

 

After this incident the people who saw this real life stunt widely cheered the bravery of Gassama and videos showing this were widely shared on the social media. The footage went so viral that it gained attention of entire France, and far from being deported to Mali being an illegal immigrant, Gassama found himself sitting with French President Emmanuel Macron at the Élysée Palace. Talking about the incident, Gassama described about the incident to Macron that, “I saw all these people shouting, and cars sounding their horns. I climbed up like that and, thank God, I saved the child. I felt afraid when I saved the child… (when) we went into the living room, I started to shake, I could hardly stand up, I had to sit down.”

Soon after the meeting, Macron tweeted that in recognition of Gassama’s “heroic act”, his status in France would be made official with a carte de séjour (residency card) “as quickly as possible”.  The president also invited Gassama – who has been living without official papers in Paris since he arrived from Mali in September – to put in a request for naturalisation; and interior minister Gérard Collomb, confirmed that he would personally ensure Gassama’s request would be accepted.

 

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