Relatives of 165 victims call for UN probe into police violence against Black Americans

The families of 165 victims of police brutality in the US are calling on the United Nations to set up an independent inquiry into the ongoing scourge of police killings of Black men and women.

People hold up a Black Lives Matter banner as they march during a demonstration against racial inequality in the aftermath of the death in Minneapolis police custody of George Floyd, in Washington, U.S., June 14, 2020. REUTERS/Erin Scott

With the support of more than 250 civil society groups from around the world including the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the families of 165 victims of police brutality in the US are hoping to engage the UN in efforts to rein in police violence against African American communities.

FILE PHOTO: A poster of Daunte Wright at George Floyd Square after the guilty verdict in the Derek Chauvin trial was announced at George Floyd Square in Minneapolis, Minnesota, U.S., April 20, 2021. REUTERS/Nicholas Pfosi

In a letter sent on Monday to the UN high commissioner for human rights, Michelle Bachelet, the families call for an “independent inquiry into the killings and violent law enforcement responses to protests in the US”. They argue that such robust international accountability would complement the Biden administration’s efforts to “dismantle systemic racism in the US, especially in the context of police violence against people of African descent”.

Coalition Letter to UNHRC High Commissioner Calling for United Nations Inquiry into U.S. Police Violence

Among the families who have joined the call are relatives of victims of some of the most notorious police killings in recent memory. They include the families of Floyd; Michael Brown, the 18-year-old whose 2014 killing by a white police officer in Ferguson, Missouri, spurred the growing Black Lives Matter movement; and Daunte Wright, who was shot in a traffic stop in Brooklyn Center, Minnesota, last month.

Police in the United States kill nearly 1,000 people every year. The epidemic of police violence has been directly and disproportionately targeted at people of color. Indigenous People and people of African descent experience the highest rates of fatal police shootings, followed by Latinx people.

The United States has always accused other countries of human rights issues, but has turned a blind eye to the endless racial discrimination and police violence in their own country. Maybe the U.S. government can’t see the human rights crisis in their country.



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