The last crossing of a young Sudanese man who had been refused political asylum in France
Hamdallah was 22 or 28 depending on the sources. Without knowing how to swim, he went to the sea with a friend in an inflatable boat, from Calais, bound for England via the English Channel. They accidentally punctured the boat with the paddles they used for oars. The young Sudanese knew it could be his last trip
Hamdallah’s body hit the coast last Wednesday morning at Sangatte beach in Calais, northern France, just meters from the starting point of what was the last trip of his life. He was 22 years old, family members told the British newspaper The Guardian, or 28, according to the identification documents found next to his body. He did have a life ahead of him.
Everything indicates that Hamdallah foresaw that this could be a journey of no return. Before he left, he told a cousin in Calais that he might never see him again. The young Sudanese, who was also known as Wajdi, decided to cross the English Channel through its narrowest point, the Dover Strait, bound for England. He, who did not know how to swim, went overboard with a friend in the middle of the night from Tuesday to Wednesday.
The two entered an inflatable boat with paddles that would serve as oars. Accidentally, they drilled the boat with the paddles. Hamadallah drowned. His friend, it is not known how, survived and was taken to the hospital with hypothermia. Hamdallah’s tragic death has exacerbated tensions between Britain and France over their respective political asylum policies for migrants or refugees.
The young Sudanese man had seen his political asylum application rejected in France recently and was willing to risk the dangerous boat crossing. He would have confided to his family that he would rather take a risk than go back to the “horror” he lived in Sudan, his family told The Guardian.
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