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LGBT activist forced to flee Mali after death threats finds new home in Paris

Louis had to escape persecution because of his sexuality

2018-06-27

An LGBT activist who was forced to flee his native Mali to escape persecution for his sexuality has found a new home in Paris.

The man – known only as Louis – had been working as a team leader for an NGO and often gave talks on HIV/Aids awareness and prevention in his home country of Mali, when one evening he received a call warning him not to return home, Africa News reported.

A group of men were waiting for him and had sworn to kill him because of his sexuality. So, Louis left without talking any belongings or telling his friends and family.

After a long journey, Louis was linked by an organisation to Armand and Christophe who agreed to host him in their Parisian flat.

Louis said: “As soon as I arrived, before I even knocked on the door, there was a sign saying, ‘Welcome Louis’.”

“I think it’s important to be able to show openness to other cultures and tolerance. That’s how we will actually build a better world, a world of peace,” added Armand.

Armand and Christophe are just one of many European citizens who have opened their homes to refugees and despite not having a spare room, the couple installed a foldaway bed in their living room.

Louis said: “When I was small at school, the teacher would ask us to draw. I would always draw the Eiffel Tower.

“Now I live in Paris, next to the Eiffel Tower!”