African refugee drowns in Venice as tourists film on phones while laughing and making racist remarks

No one jumped in to help the man

Samuel Osborne
Thursday 26 January 2017 11:10
Comments
African refugee drowns in Venice as tourists laugh and film on phones

An investigation has been opened after an African refugee drowned in Venice's Grand Canal as onlookers watched from nearby boats and filmed him with their phones.

Footage shows the man, named as 22-year-old Gambian Pateh Sabally, flailing in the middle of the canal.

At least three life rings were thrown into the water near him, but he did not appear to reach for them, raising speculation he wanted to kill himself.

No one jumped in to help him.

In the video, some bystanders can be heard yelling at the man.

"He is stupid. He wants to die," one person says.

"Go on, go back home," another shouted, The Times reports.

One man is allegedly heard to say: "Let him die at this point."

“I don’t want to blame anyone but maybe something more could have been done to save him,” said Dino Basso, the local head of the Italian association of lifeguards.

Italian media said Mr Sabally had residency papers for Italy and had sailed from Africa two years ago.

More than 181,000 migrants arrived in Italy by boat in 2016, most of them from sub-Saharan Africa, an increase of almost 18 per cent compared with 2015.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
Opt-out-policy
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

By clicking ‘Create my account’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

Comments

Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in