Obama: "We Should All be Concerned" about Police Violence against Black People

Obama: "We Should All be Concerned" about Police Violence against Black People
Fecha de publicación: 
8 July 2016
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WARSAW - US president Barack Obama addressed the police violence against black people which has recently claimed the lives of two young African-Americans in the USA, while saying that all Americans should be troubled from the incidents.

"When incidents like this occur, there's a big chunk of our fellow citizenry that feels as if because of the color of their skin they are not being treated the same. This is not just a black issue. This is not just a Hispanic issue," Obama said at a televised press conference Thursday from Warsaw where he will attend the NATO summit.

"This is an American issue that we should all care about. It's incumbent on all of us to say we can do better than this. We are better than this," he added.

Protesters took to the streets in major cities across the US following the deaths of two Afro-Americans at the hands of police, one in Louisiana on Tuesday and another in Minnesota on Wednesday, and the publication of two separate videos on social networks showing the incidents.

According to the president, "change has been too slow, and we have to have a greater sense of urgency about this".

Obama also considered both incidents "symptomatic of a broader set of racial disparities that exist in our criminal justice system" and cited statistics showing a disproportionate number of arrests and convictions of blacks compared to whites.

Racial tension has been triggered again in the US after the deaths of Alton Sterling, 37, who died Tuesday in Baton Rouge, Louisiana at the hands of two white police officers and of Philando Castile who was shot dead in his car on Wednesday in Falcon Heights, Minnesota.

The US Justice Department, responsible for investigating racial crimes and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) have opened a civil rights investigation into the death of Sterling. Still images from video recorded by a mobile phone sparked numerous protests.

Minnesota governor Mark Dayton today called for the government to open a similar investigation into the incident which occurred in his state.

The US has experienced various moments of racial tension for over a year, especially after the death of the unarmed black teenager Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, at the hands of a white police officer who was later dismissed of all charges.

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