Guillaume Valette, a survivor of the 2015 Bataclan attack who killed himself two years later has been officially recognized as the 131st victim of the attacks.
While he had not been physically harmed during the terror attack in November of 2015, Guillaume Valette was left with severe post-traumatic stress disorder which deteriorated to the point where, in 2017, he hanged himself, Le Parisien reports.
Following his suicide, Valette’s parents pushed to have him recognized as a victim of the attack with their lawyer presenting an expert who testified that the 30-year-old had no prior psychiatric history prior to the attack.
Psychiatrist Dr. Catherine Wong testified before a court regarding the case saying, “It can be established that the trauma of 13/11/15 was responsible for a state of post-traumatic stress in Mr. Guillaume Valette, who was complicated by a major depressive episode […] and that suicide had been a complication of this major depressive episode. The suicide of Mr. Valette Guillaume is, therefore, the ultimate consequence of the attack of 13/11/15.”
The testimony convinced judges to recognize Valette as a direct victim of the attacks with Claire Josserand Schmidt, a lawyer with the French Association of Victims of Terrorism (AFVT) calling the initial judgement, “a huge step forward.”
“The story of Guillaume must alert the public authorities on the necessary accompaniment of victims of attacks over time,” she added and said that mental injuries should be recognized in the same way that bodily injuries are.
Last year, Bataclan victims were granted 85 million euros in compensation, which was largely funded by a small fee on property insurance contracts.
Other parents of Bataclan victims have expressed anger over the attack such as Patrick Jardin, father of 31-year-old victim Nathalie Jardin, who was attacked by French media for associating with anti-mass migration and anti-Islamisation activists.
Jardin was also heavily involved in getting French rapper Médine’s concert at the Bataclan cancelled last year. The concert caused controversy as the rapper had previously released an album entitled “Jihad.”
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