PARIS (CBSLA/AP) — A migrant from Mali living in France has been offered citizenship by President Emmanuel Macron for risking his life to save a 4-year-old boy hanging off a fifth-floor balcony.

Video of Saturday’s daring rescue in in Paris’ northern 18th district immediately went viral. It shows 22-year-old Mamoudou Gassama scaling an apartment building, climbing from balcony to balcony, grabbing the child and whisking him to safety.

The French leader met with Gassama on Monday at the presidential Elysee Palace.

“I didn’t think twice, I just climbed up and thank God, God helped me,” Gassama told Macron. “The more I climbed, the more I had the courage to climb up higher, that’s it.”

(Photo by Thibault Camus / POOL / AFP / Getty Images)

President Macron awarded Gassama a medal and certificate for “courage and devotion,” and offered him legal residence papers with the option of citizenship, as well as a job as a firefighter.

(Photo by Thibault Camus / POOL / AFP / Getty Images)

French media reported that the father of the small child was detained for alleged parental neglect.

(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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