Malian Muslim worker in kosher store hid Jews, saved them. Right now, Lassana Bathily is coolest man on the planet. pic.twitter.com/R8ex4F1Hbw
— amol rajan (@amolrajan) January 10, 2015
… Bathily, a 24-year-old Muslim from Mali, was working in the store in the Porte de Vincennes neighborhood when the Islamist gunman burst in.
As panic ensued, up to 15 customers in the store hurried down to the store basement, when Bathily had an idea.
“When they ran down, I opened the door [to the freezer],” he told France’s BFMTV.
He quickly shut off the freezer and switched off its light. As he closed the door to shelter the customers inside, he told them, “Stay calm here. I’m going out.”
Eventually police raided the market, killing Coulibaly. As the hostages were freed from the freezer, they had a few words of thanks for Bathily. “They congratulated me,” he told BFMTV…
— Julia Macfarlane (@juliamacfarlane) January 8, 2015
As explained in Vox:
… #JeSuisAhmed honors Ahmed Merabet, the French police officer who was murdered outside the Charlie Hebdo offices by the same gunmen who went on to murder the magazine’s staffers. Merabet, in addition to being a police officer, is believed to have been part of France’s large Muslim community.
Twitter users have rallied to the hashtag to argue that Merabet, like the murdered journalists, should be honored as a defender of free speech — particularly because he died trying to protect a publication that had mocked and derided his own religion…
#JeSuisAhmed does not dispute the sentiment of Je Suis Charlie. Rather, it adds to it, by calling attention to the importance of tolerance as well as solidarity. That is important in its own right, but it’s also an elegant response to those who might respond to the attack with broad hostility towards Islam, or suspicion of Muslims as a group…
— Jim Sciutto (@jimsciutto) January 10, 2015