George Floyd’s death: Minneapolis announces its intention to “dismantle” its police

Minneapolis police “dismantled”: the authorities of this American city announced a shock measure two weeks after the death of a black man during his arrest by a white policeman, who must appear for the first time in justice on Monday. accused of murder.

Read also:Racism, the world revolt

Thousands of people demonstrated this weekend in the United States and around the planet against racism. Without these historical gatherings degenerating into riots and looting as happened in the days following the tragedy in several American cities, which had to implement a curfew.

However, the Belgian police arrested 150 people involved in vandalism in Brussels on Sunday evening at the end of a demonstration in which nearly 10,000 people participated.

Read also: In France, young people are at the forefront

From Bristol to Budapest, via Madrid and Rome, tens of thousands of Europeans joined Sunday’s protests over the death, on 25 May, of George Floyd, a 46-year-old black man.

A video filmed by a passerby shows a white policeman, Derek Chauvin, holding his knee for nearly nine minutes on the neck of the nailed victim who complains that he cannot breathe.

In Rome, an unforeseen demonstration gathered thousands of young people in the vast Piazza del Popolo who knelt in silence, with their fists raised, for nine minutes.

Protesters in Madrid also knelt and raised their fists, a gesture of protest against police violence against blacks initiated in 2016 by American football player Colin Kaerpernick.

Policeman in front of the judge

Derek Chauvin was initially charged with manslaughter, but this count was reclassified on June 4 as a homicide, punishable by forty years in prison. He is expected to appear in court for the first time on Monday.

The three policemen accompanying him, who were not immediately prosecuted, were eventually charged with complicity and placed in jail. These prosecutions were at the heart of the protesters’ demands, but they did not end the mobilization that has since gone global.

Last consequence: the police forces of Minneapolis, Minnesota, will disappear in their current form. So his city council decided on Sunday. “We are committed to dismantling the police services as we know them in the city of Minneapolis and to rebuild with our people a new model of public safety that truly keeps our people safe.Lisa Bender, chairman of the city council, told CNN.

He said he intended to transfer funds from the police budget to population-based projects. The city council is also planning to consider how to replace the current police force, he added. “The idea of ​​not having a police force is certainly not a short-term projectHe clarified.

According to city councilor Alondra Cano, the council concluded that the city police were “not reformable and that we will put an end to the current system of law enforcement“.

But city mayor Jacob Frey had made it known before the council vote that he was not in favor of this dismantling, telling AFP that he preferred a “extensive structural reform to review this structurally racist systemTherefore, the city council’s promise may take time to materialize.

On Sunday the Democrats called for a radical transformation of the police, accused of discrimination, injustice and brutality against black Americans.

Act in Congress

Several elected Democrats want to address what they believe to be the result of the racism that has plagued US history from slavery, by presenting legislation to Congress on Monday to reform the police as a whole in the United States.

Some measures have already been imposed at the local level since the beginning of this protest movement. The Seattle police chief banned the use of tear gas for thirty days. Minneapolis police have announced that they are now banning the dangerous “air vent” technique.

Floyd’s death is just the latest in a long line of deaths in recent years of black men mostly unarmed in interactions with white police officers.

The deaths in the summer of 2014 of Michael Brown in Ferguson and Eric Garner in New York provided the springboard for the Black Lives Matter movement, which has since been picked up around the world.

American star Beyoncé echoed BLM’s messages on Sunday during a virtual ceremony, with other artists, on YouTube called “Dear Class of 2020” and aimed at graduates from all over the world. . “You came here in the midst of a global crisis, a racial pandemic and the worldwide expression of outrage over the senseless murder of another unarmed black human being. And again you succeeded. We are so proud of you», Declared the singer, denouncing sectarianism.

LIBERATION with AFP

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