Bite, hit, arrest… a Senegalese diplomat stationed in Canada found himself at the heart of a police operation, and since then the case has taken a diplomatic turn. The head of Senegalese diplomacy condemns a “racist and barbaric act”. In the first instance, it is a search that goes wrong.
According to the police in Gatineau, the city where the events took place, it was a bailiff with a prescription who introduced himself to the Senegalese diplomat. It was in light of his refusal to cooperate that the bailiff called in the police to carry out his mission.
Also according to Canadian law enforcement, the diplomat stationed at the Senegalese embassy in Ottawa was very aggressive, wounding and punching a policewoman in the face and biting another, forcing police to subdue the Senegalese envoy by pinning her to the ground before detaining her in the back in their vehicle.
Two days later, the reaction from Senegal was not long in coming. In a statement, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs claims to have summoned the Chargé d’Affaires of the Canadian Embassy in Dakar to protest “the descent of rare violence by the Canadian police” on August 2 at its diplomat’s house.
The Senegalese state speaks of “humiliating physical and moral violence” carried out by the diplomat, “in front of witnesses and in the presence of her minor children”. He adds that the victim was “handcuffed and severely beaten, to the point that he had difficulty breathing, which led to his evacuation by ambulance to the hospital”
The Gatineau police, for its part, defends itself by stating that the diplomat never mentioned being injured or in pain. She could open an investigation for assault on an officer.
Senegal, for its part, condemns “a racist and barbaric act” and reserves the right to take any appropriate action in this matter.