middle of March 2021 a video became public, on which can be seen, like a paramedic hits a man tied on a couch with all his might in the head. Two policemen who are present stand there motionless. Instead of stopping the paramedic or keeping him away from the tied up after the assault, go on, as if nothing had happened.
The incident occurred on the night of 8. November 2020 in a refugee shelter. The affected, Amar, is Kurd and because of the war in Syria 2017 fled to Germany. We talked to him about it, how he looks at the media coverage of the incident as well as the lack of legal processing and what consequences the assault has for him.
The interview was conducted by Jörg Bernhardt and Franka Füller
press office: Amar, how are you doing right now?
Amar: So Gott will, I'm fine right now. I only have pain in my cheek. Gives, where the bone is broken.
This means, it takes some time for the break to heal?
I do not know exactly, because three bones were broken there. The operation would be serious. The doctors thought, that they would have to cut open my head lengthways for that, to even get to the cheekbones. This operation would have to be done for this, but I can't imagine that. I don't want such a serious operation.
Besides the health effects, wwhat other consequences the assault has for you?
I have had problems with my eyesight in my left eye ever since. I can no longer see well in the distance with him. It also damaged me mentally. I can no longer see a police car or hear sirens, without panic.
After the video was released, there was one for a short time wider reporting. What was your perspective on it?
There was a lot of coverage of my case, and, but I couldn't read it all myself. I can only read Arabic myself, that was the problem then. But I got a lot of calls. They were mostly my friends. Actually from people, who knew me well. You answered and said, they would have read the reports. Then they asked me: "Is that correct, you are to blame?“It sounded like that with them, as if I was the guilty party and the medic innocent. I couldn't understand that at all and asked myself, how this impression could have arisen.
Among other things, the paramedic's lawyer has in Doubt drawn, whether the blow hit you at all and not just the back of the stretcher. We were stunned ourselves when we heard, as the was then partly received uncritically in the reporting. Did you hear that too and what did you think about it??
And, I then noticed that too. I was totally shocked by it, because it said yes, that only the mattress was hit. But in the video you can see everything and the injury was discovered by the doctors.
You said earlier, That the video was given to you by the caretaker of the property the day after the attack, and that you yourself could no longer remember exactly, what happened that night. How was it for you, then see this video for the first time?
I was dismayed when I saw this, because I couldn't remember anything myself. Also about how I behaved before and then emptied the fire extinguisher, I was shocked. I got a call from Turkey that day, it was actually a completely normal day. Then I got the message, that my cousin passed away. I grew up with her. I was desperate and angry, I then drank a bottle of whiskey. From then on I don't even know anymore, what's happened. It is important to me, also apologize for my condition that day. I'm not usually like that, I don't do that. This is not everyday life for me, such behavior.
When I saw the blow in the video, it made me very angry. But it made me even angrier, how the police simply stood by and watched. You showed no reaction at all and did not intervene. They did not hold the perpetrator accountable at all.
You know, what happened after the video clip?
When I was supposed to be taken away in the ambulance, the paramedic squeezed my neck in the car. So, that I couldn't breathe for a while. A witness, who was standing in front of the ambulance, told me that. That was also a person who lives in the home, a Kurd. He was standing in front of the car and could see me like that.
You then went straight to the police with the video, correct?
And, I went straight to the police, to file a complaint. The police there asked me to, delete the video immediately. Then they wanted to see my cell phone, to notice, how i delete the video in front of them. I also deleted the video out of fear, while they were watching. Fortunately, I had already sent the recording to friends beforehand. So I had a copy of it. You also did not give reasons, why should I delete this. But I think, they did not want, that it will be public.
We wondered, how it was that morning, when you woke up in the cell and then your pain noticed. Did the cops tell you about that Morgen said something about it, when they fired you?
I woke up and then at first I wondered, why I am in custody, because I didn't know anything anymore. I felt the pain right away, but at that moment I was mainly interested, why I'm sitting in the cell. The police then said to me, I shouldn't worry and I'll be released in half an hour. They didn't say anything about the night. When I was at home in front of the mirror, I saw the injury more closely.
The police had nothing to do with the attack on you in their first press release by the paramedic written. That doesn't exactly seem of one own To show interest in clarification. How did you and your lawyer make the decision, publish the video?
We had the video before, but first waited, whether the police act of their own accord. When, however, after a while no criminal proceedings were opened and the investigations were even supposed to be discontinued, there was no way out, except to publish the recordings.
What do you hope for from the legal clarification, should it still happen?
My hope is, that there is justice for me, by sentencing the paramedic for his attack and the police for their behavior. I didn't mean to, that the paramedic was fired from his job because of this and can no longer earn any money. I don't want this because of him, but mainly because he also has a family and children. They couldn't help his behavior.
Is there something, what you wish for the process? Something, how to support you?
When people come, I would always be happy about it. Most important to me is, that justice will be restored. But it's still unclear, if and when there will be the trial. There is nothing official yet. To date, only I have been fined 370 Get euros, because of this evening.
Many Thanks, Amar! We wish you all the best and hope for you, that your desire for justice will be fulfilled!
During our conversation, Amar shows us another one, video recorded by himself. In this you can see him, how he holds on to the underside of a moving freight train. 21 The drive from Greece to Hungary took hours. He is arrested there and all of his belongings are confiscated. Later he makes it, to flee to Germany alone. He said "The war, the way there was traumatic for me, it all had an impact.“