Monday, April 22, 2024

Fatal shooting of Gambian in Germany: Wife disputes police account of events

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By Yahya Sonko, Migration & Human Rights Activist in Germany

The recent statement released by the Nienburg/Schaumburg police station regarding the shooting incident involving a 46-year-old Gambian man in Lower Saxony is deeply troubling and misleading.

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Contrary to their report, the victim, Lamin Touray, was not threatening his girlfriend with a knife, nor did he attack police officers.

As a leading Gambian migration activist in Germany, I have personally spoken with Lamin’s mother and wife, both of whom vehemently dispute the police’s account of the events. According to them, Lamin’s wife actually called the police seeking assistance to take him to the hospital due to concerns about his mental health, as he had been feeling unwell and was carrying a knife in his pocket.

Tragically, instead of providing the necessary support and assistance, the police escalated the situation, resulting in Lamin’s unjust and untimely death. Lamin’s wife explicitly informed the police that he was not a threat to her and was simply in need of medical attention. Yet, the officers chose to respond with lethal force, treating Lamin like an animal in the forest rather than a human being in distress.

We categorically reject the false narrative put forth by the police and demand a thorough and impartial investigation into Lamin’s death. The truth must be brought to light, and those responsible for this senseless act of violence must be held accountable. We urge the media and the public to refrain from accepting the police’s version of events unquestioningly and to stand with us in seeking justice for Lamin Touray and his grieving family.

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As Gambians, we stand united in grief and outrage over the senseless loss of Basiru Jallow who was killed by a German citizen in March 2023, Saikou Kanteh who was brutalized by German police officers during the process of deporting him, and now Lamin Touray who was killed at the hands of German authorities. These tragic incidents highlight a disturbing pattern of violence and injustice against Black lives, including Gambian lives, in Germany. We demand swift and thorough accountability for those responsible for these heinous acts. We will not stay silent in the face of systemic racism and police brutality. We will take to the streets to demand justice, and we call on the international community to stand with us in solidarity. Black Lives Matter, Gambian Lives Matter, and we will not rest until justice is served.

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