Thu, 02 Jul 2020

World Reacts with Anger, Dismay to US Man's Death

Voice of America
31 May 2020, 16:05 GMT+10

Protests were held in several cities around the world Saturday, in seeming solidarity with demonstrators in the U.S. over the death of an African American man while in police custody earlier this week.

The U.S. embassies in several countries drew protesters, angered by the death of George Floyd on May 25. Floyd died after a white police office kneeled on his neck for nearly 9 minutes. The incident was videotaped, and Floyd could be heard pleading several times, "I can't breathe."

In Berlin Saturday, thousands of Germans gathered outside the U.S. Embassy, chanting "Black Lives Matter," according to Forbes.

A protest about racism in general drew thousands Saturday in Toronto, Forbes reported.

On Friday, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, referring to Floyd's death, said in an article in The Washington Post, "Racism is real. It's in the United States, but it's also in Canada. ... We know people are facing systemic discrimination, unconscious bias and anti-black racism every day."

In Mexico City on Saturday, drawings and flowers in support of Floyd were attached to a fence near the U.S. Embassy, according to social media posts.

On Friday, U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet also condemned the circumstances surrounding Floyd's death, which she said was the latest "in a long line of killings of unarmed African Americans by U.S. police officers and members of the public."

"I am dismayed to have to add George Floyd's name to that of Breonna Taylor, Eric Garner, Michael Brown and many other unarmed African Americans who have died over the years at the hands of the police - as well as people such as Ahmaud Arbery and Trayvon Martin who were killed by armed members of the public," she said.

Tibet's spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, said he had seen the video of Floyd lying on the ground with a policeman's knee on his neck.

"Because of this discrimination, racism on the basis of race, such things are done," he said during a webcast on compassion Friday. "We see in the news channels, the media, about discrimination on the basis of color or religion these days, and then there is killing due to that, and then there are some who even take it as a pride to be able to kill somebody."

The African Union Commission on Friday issued a strongly worded rare public statement on the domestic events in the United States.

In the statement, the chairperson of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, "strongly condemns" police conduct in the Floyd case and extended his "deepest condolences to his family and loved ones."

VOA's Cindy Saine contributed to this report.

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