George Floyd — Protests Go International, Brother Pleads for Peace

  • “We’ve had enough and if they’re not going to listen we’re not going to listen we’re just going to scream louder and louder,” one of the protesters in London said.
  • In Brazil, protesters chanted “I can’t breathe” in Rio de Janeiro before they were dispersed.
  • Terrence Floyd, the brother of the deceased, pleaded for peace, adding that the destruction caused will not bring back his brother.

Protests against the death of George Floyd have received international support, with many countries joining in as demonstrations continue across US cities. In London and Berlin, thousands protested outside the US embassies. The demonstrations began with the protestors taking a knee for nine minutes.

George Floyd was an unarmed African-American man who died on May 25, 2020, after white Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin knelt on Floyd’s neck for over seven minutes while other officers helped restrain Floyd in Minneapolis, Minnesota United States. Floyd’s death has been compared to the 2014 death of Eric Garner, who repeated “I can’t breathe” while being suffocated by arresting officers.

“We’ve had enough and if they’re not going to listen we’re not going to listen we’re just going to scream louder and louder,” one of the protesters in London said. In Canada protesters filled the streets of Vancouver and Montreal. In Brazil, protesters chanted “I can’t breathe” in Rio de Janeiro before they were dispersed.

Protests were witnessed in Amsterdam, Netherlands, and in Sydney, Australia, protesters chanted Floyd’s final words “I can’t breathe.” People in Germany have also pledged its support for the protests, saying that they are legitimate. Meanwhile, China and Iran have criticized the way Floyd’s protests are being handled in the US.

Terrence Floyd, the brother of the deceased, pleaded for peace, adding that the destruction caused will not bring back his brother. Terrence, who lives in New York, said:

“I understand y’all are upset. I doubt y’all are half as upset as I am . . . So if I’m not over here blowing up stuff, if I’m not over here messing up my community, then what are y’all doing? What are y’all doing? Y’all doing nothing. Because that’s not going to bring my brother back at all.”

He wore a face mask with his brother’s image and dropped to his knees at the spot where Floyd met his death in Minneapolis.

In St. Louis, the peaceful demonstrations turned violent at night, with protesters setting up fires, smashing windows, and looting. Four police officers were shot and taken to hospital. However, it is not clear who fired the shots. Military helicopters and pepper spray were used to disperse protesters in Washington DC.

The George Floyd protests, and riots, are an ongoing series of violent uprisings in the United States that initially started in the Minneapolis–Saint Paul metropolitan area of Minnesota before spreading nationwide. As of May 31, there were simultaneous protests in over 100 other cities in the United States and internationally supporting those seeking justice for Floyd as well as speaking out against excessive police brutality.

The protests, which began on May 25, the day Floyd was killed, have since spread across US cities, and has been characterized by a lot of violence. The protesters, who chanted “no justice, no peace,” carried placards that said “He said I can’t breathe. Justice for George.”

Four people have been killed and several others injured during the protests. More than 4,000 people have so far been arrested across the cities since the protests began. The National Guard has been activated in 17 states and night curfew enacted in 40 states.

In a horrifying video, Chauvin, pinned Floyd down with his knee as he lay on the ground during an arrest. The video footage was taken by a witness and was sent on social media. It showed Floyd helpless, asking the police not to kill him. Floyd said several times, “I can’t breathe!”

The officer is then heard telling him to relax he continues to pin him down. “My stomach hurts. My neck hurts. Everything hurts,” Floyd cries out. “[I need] water or something. Please. Please. I can’t breathe, officer. . . I cannot breathe. I cannot breathe.” In the footage witnesses are heard pleading with the police to let go the man but their pleas fell on deaf ears.

The officer, Derek Chauvin was arrested on Friday and charged with third degree murder and manslaughter. All the officers involved in Floyd’s arrest were fired on May 26.

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Juliet Norah

I am a freelance journalist is passionate about news. I derive pleasure in informing people about the happenings in the world

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