These are days “very strong in emotion, repairers, liberators, it is a necessary passage for us”, in the words of Saïd Assoumani, president of the association of victims of this accident which killed 152 people and left only one survivor.
Since Monday, around thirty people have taken the helm, sometimes supported by a loved one, helped by a few sheets covered with notes. In the room, “decimated” families shared this collective tribute, regularly overwhelmed by tears.
In the plane that crashed in the Indian Ocean on the night of June 29 to 30, 2009, Fatima, 50, lost her mother, “loving, solar” and her little brother, “an incarnate angel”.
That summer, the 17-year-old accompanied his mother to the Comoros, where she was from and where she was soon to return to live at the time of her early retirement.
Living in the United States, Fatima had exceptionally spent a month and a half in Marseille with her family before the accident – a “synchronicity” for her.
“Like everyone here, we received the phone call in the night”, announcing that the plane had “disappeared”.
After “the shock, the emotion”, learning “that there was a survivor” aroused “hope” in her.
“And the more the days passed, the more the truth imposed itself on me and I had to accept,” she continues. “So I went to shout my anger, to the ocean, to the wind, to God, I lost my faith that day”.
Subsequently, “anxiety attacks” began, she had to stay several days in a psychiatric hospital, she developed “an autoimmune disease”.
Psychological help allows him “to be standing in front of you today”, she adds in a soft voice.
Fatima says she has neither “hate” nor “anger”. “I am here to be heard, so that responsibilities are recognized, calmly”.
– Absence –
Most passengers on the A310 were French of Comorian origin or Comorians from France.
Many traveled to Moroni to celebrate “great weddings”, a tradition bringing together entire villages. All have been cancelled.
After the disaster, only some bodies could be recovered, depriving families of funeral rites.
Relatives also tell of the long repercussions, the absence of the deceased when they had their baccalaureate, at their wedding, at the birth of their children.
All regret that no representative of Yemenia, tried for homicides and involuntary wounds, is present – because of the civil war which ravages Yemen, according to the defense.
“Everything that is said is transmitted”, assures the lawyer of the company, “the anger” and “the authenticity, the depth of your pain”.
When his turn comes, Ibrahim, who has lost his mother, his brother and his sister, launches after a long silence.
As an “eldest”, this now 43-year-old man was the “hope” of his mother who “raised” him to “assume his responsibilities”.
On receiving the “famous phone call”, he who was then working at Roissy airport “understands immediately”.
For five years, he then experienced a “descent into hell” which he thinks was, “with hindsight”, a form of “punishment” he inflicted on himself for “not having prevented them from taking this plane” – the poor flight conditions on the Yemenia being denounced for several months.
It is “thanks to the love of the living” that he “agreed” to seek help, to start psychotherapy. “I’m going uphill,” he says.
“And just a month ago, I became the father of a little girl.” To whom he gave, “unintentionally”, a first name composed of those of (his) disappeared”, he specifies, very moved.
“I expect from this trial a case law that will serve as a reference for our country of origin, the Comoros”, he concludes.
“I also expect this to be the trial of human dignity and the value that each of our lives represents. That our dear resilience is not exploited (…) And finally, that justice is done”.