From Berlin to New Zealand, protests against death of George Floyd spread internationally
Issued on: 01/06/2020 – 13:42Modified: 01/06/2020 – 13:42
As demonstrations against the police killing of George Floyd spread across the United States in recent days, protesters in cities around the world also took up the mantle to decry systemic racism and police brutality in the United States and at home.
Many people have watched with growing unease at the civil unrest in the US after the latest in a series of police killings of unarmed black men and women. Floyd died on May 25 in Minneapolis after a white police officer kneeled on Floyds neck for almost nine minutes, including several minutes after he became unresponsive. The officer, Derek Chauvin, has been fired and charged with murder. The three other officers with him were also fired.
Some 4,000 people marched in New Zealand's largest city Auckland on Monday to protest the killing of George Floyd as well as to stand up against police violence and racism in their own country. Demonstrators marched to the US consulate, where they kneeled in protest holding banners with slogans like, “I cant breathe” (words spoken by Floyd just before his death), “The real virus is racism” and "Black Lives Matter". Hundreds more joined peaceful protests and vigils elsewhere in New Zealand, where Monday was a public holiday.
In France, family and friends of a French black man who died shortly after he was arrested by police in 2016 have called for a protest on Tuesday that will also pay homage to George Floyd.
The circumstances of the death of Adama Traore, a 24-year-old of Malian origin, are still under investigation by justice authorities. Calls for the protest in front of a Paris court come after some medical experts last week attributed the death to a cardiac problem, the latest in a series of conflicting medical assessments. French police claimed Traore died of a heart attack due to pre-existing medical condition. His family said he died from asphyxiation from police tactics.
In a video message published on social media, Traores sister Assa Traore calls for protesters to express their indignation “at a time when the world, when France is outraged by the death of George Floyd”. She said “they used the same words, their last words: I cant breathe, I cant breathe.'"
At a gathering in central London on Sunday, thousands offered their support for American demonstrators, chanting "No justice, no peace!" and waving placards asking, “How many more?”
Hundreds of protesters gathered at the US embassy in Berlin for a second day on Sunday, chanting "Black Lives Matter".
Hundreds gathered at The Spire in Dublin and at the US embassy to protest against Floyd's death.
In Brazil, hundreds of people protested crimes committed by the police against black people in Rio de Janeiros working-class neighbourhoods, known as favelas. Police used tear gas to disperse them.
An anti-racism protest degenerated into clashes between Montreal police and demonstrators, with police declared the gathering illegal after they say projectiles were thrown at officers who responded with pepper spray and tear gas. Some windows were smashed and fires were set.
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