Former President Barack Obama on Monday addressed the nationwide protests over the death of George Floyd, praising the “overwhelming majority” of peaceful demonstrators, condemning the violence brought on by a “small minority” and calling on a “new generation of activists” to “bring about real change.” “The waves of protests across the country represent a genuine and legitimate frustration over a decades-long failure to reform police practices and the broader criminal justice system in the United States,” Obama wrote in an essay published on Medium.com. The former president then lauded police in Camden, N.J., and Flint, Mich., for publicly supporting peaceful protests before he criticized demonstrators who have been acting violently.
Joe Biden said Monday that police under attack in the line of duty should shoot their assailants “in the leg instead of the heart” as a way to avert the killing of civilians. Biden's remarks were made as cities across the nation continue to be engulfed in violent protests in the wake of the death of George Floyd, an African-American, in police custody in Minneapolis. Former Officer Derek Chauvin, who kneeled on Floyd's neck for nearly nine minutes, was charged Friday with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter.
The Minneapolis Police Department Chief filed a civil suit against the department alleging discrimination against people of color including black officers in 2007, CNN reported. Excessive force complaints against Minneapolis officers were common, specifically from African-American residents, The New York Times reported. Derek Chauvin, the ex-police officer charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter tied to George Floyd's death had 18 complaints against him prior to the incident.
REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the New York progressive, slammed a New York City Police Department union for tweeting confidential information about Mayor Bill de Blasio's daughter's arrest on Saturday during a protest against racism. The Sergeants Benevolent Association tweeted a screenshot of Chiara de Blasio's arrest record and attacked the mayor over his daughter's participation in the protests. Ocasio-Cortez urged the NYPD to de-escalate with protesters rather than respond with violent force, and she told the union to "apologize and own this egregious behavior."
Nearly three dozen black alumni of Liberty University denounced school President Jerry Falwell Jr. on Monday, suggesting he step down after he mocked Virginia's mask-wearing requirement by invoking the blackface scandal that engulfed the state's governor last year. In a letter to Falwell, shared with The Associated Press, 35 faith leaders and former student-athletes told Falwell that his past comments “have repeatedly violated and misrepresented" Christian principles. “You have belittled staff, students and parents, you have defended inappropriate behaviors of politicians, encouraged violence, and disrespected people of other faiths,” they wrote, advising Falwell that “your heart is in politics more than Christian academia or ministry.”
The survey, conducted on May 29 and 30, found that 52 percent of Americans answered yes when asked whether they “think that President Trump is a racist.” Only 37 percent said no. Just 33 percent said the president should continue “posting messages on Twitter.”
Brazil's Supreme Court Judge Celso de Mello shelved on Monday night a request made by political parties to seize President Jair Bolsonaro's cellphone as part of an investigation on whether or not he tried to meddle with law enforcement for personal reasons. De Mello agreed with a statement made by the government's Attorney General Augusto Aras that it is up to public prosecutors to request due diligence within a probe, adding that political parties have no legitimacy to do so. But the Supreme Court judge criticized Bolsonaro's recent remarks that he would not comply with an possible court order determining the seizure of his cellphone.
One of Huawei's leading critics, US Senator Tom Cotton, has told UK MPs that he fears China is trying to use the telecoms equipment-maker to "drive a hi-tech wedge between us". The Republican politician was giving evidence to an inquiry by the House of Commons' Defence Select Committee into the security of 5G. Mr Cotton added that the US, UK and other allies could team up to develop superior 5G technologies of their own. Huawei said the claims lacked evidence.
The families of British dual nationals imprisoned by Iran today criticised the Foreign Office for “complete inaction” in trying to secure their release, as an Iranian scientist previously jailed by the US was allowed to fly home. A plane carrying Sirous Asgari took off early this morning and was on its way back to Tehran to bring him home, Iran's foreign minister announced, raising hopes of a potential prisoner swap for Western dual nationals in Iran. Mr Asgari was accused by a US court in 2016 of stealing trade secrets while on an academic visit to Ohio, where he visited a university working on projects for the US Navy.
Unrest in America: Peaceful protesters lament violence at George Floyd demonstrations, but understand the rage behind it The CPJ said it is investigating reports of attacks and arrests in Louisville, Kentucky, Las Vegas, Atlanta and Washington, D.C. U.S. police have arrested or attacked journalists more than 110 times since May 28, according to the Nieman Foundation for Journalism, President Donald Trump has verbally attacked the media throughout his term. Saturday afternoon, he tweeted a message that "Fake News is the Enemy of the People." Sunday, he accused the media of "doing everything within their power to foment hatred and anarchy."
Joe Biden on Monday suggested that police forces could train officers to shoot attackers in the legs in order to reduce potential fatalities. There is “the idea that instead of standing there and teaching a cop when there's an unarmed person, coming at him with a knife or something, to shoot him in the leg instead of in the heart,” Biden said. Biden made his remarks while meeting with African American community leaders at the Bethel AME Church in Wilmington, Del. The former vice president was discussing the widespread protests touched off by the killing of George Floyd, an African American man, at the hands of white police officers in Minneapolis, Minn.
A lawyer hired by the federal judge overseeing the case of former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn urged a federal appeals court Monday not to force him to end it now. But in a separate court filing, the Justice Department said the case should be ended because only prosecutors, not judges, can decide when to abandon a criminal case. The government last month told Federal District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan it wanted to drop the case, after Attorney General Williams Barr decided that Flynn's false statements to the FBI were not material to any open investigation.
Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images In a leaked email, the president of the Minneapolis Federation of Police said the ongoing protests over the death of George Floyd were a "terrorist movement" that has occurred following a "long time build up which dates back years." Lt. Bob Kroll blamed politicians for the ongoing tension, specifically targeting Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz and Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey. The former police chief of Minneapolis called on Kroll to resign, and Frey said Kroll was "shockingly indifferent to his role in undermining that trust and support" of the police force.
Chinese government labs only released the genome after another lab published it ahead of authorities on a virologist website on Jan. 11. Even then, China stalled for at least two weeks more on providing WHO with detailed data on patients and cases, according to recordings of internal meetings held by the U.N. health agency through January — all at a time when the outbreak arguably might have been dramatically slowed. WHO officials were lauding China in public because they wanted to coax more information out of the government, the recordings obtained by the AP suggest.
On Tuesday, Joe Biden, former vice president and presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, criticized President Trump for the clearing-out of protesters with tear gas near the White House on Monday evening so the president could be photographed in front of St. John's Episcopal Church.
More than a quarter of the confirmed novel coronavirus cases in Brazil's southernmost state of Rio Grande do Sul are among meat plant workers, the labor prosecutors' office said on Monday. The prosecutors said in a statement that an estimated 2,399 employees from 24 slaughterhouses in 18 municipalities of the state have been infected. That equates to 25.7% of the 9,332 confirmed cases of coronavirus in Rio Grande do Sul as of Sunday, according to health ministry statistics.
George Floyd, the Minnesota man who died after an officer arresting him pressed his knee onto his neck, died by homicide, according to the results of two autopsies released on Monday — one by the county medical examiner and the other by independent pathologists commissioned by Floyd's family. Dr. Allecia Wilson, one of the pathologists who conducted the independent autopsy, said Monday afternoon that Floyd died as a result of mechanical asphyxiation. The manner of death was ruled homicide, but the office noted that "is not a legal determination of culpability or intent."
The Philippines has told the United States it is suspending its bid to break off a key military pact, the two allies said Tuesday in a sharp turnaround of President Rodrigo Duterte's foreign policy. Duterte in February gave notice to Washington he was axing the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) after accusing the US of interference in his internationally condemned narcotics crackdown. That began a 180-day countdown to ending the deal central to hundreds of joint military exercises with the US per year and a major component of their nearly 70-year-old alliance.
The capital was awash with anger and pain as tear gas blew along the streets and rubber bullets flew Sunday night and into the early hours of Monday morning. Protesters clashed with law enforcement for the third straight evening outside the White House, and numerous businesses were vandalized by rioters defying a citywide curfew. Protesters gathered throughout Sunday in Lafayette Park, which is across the street from the White House and has been a focal point of the demonstrations that began here Friday evening.
The new stealth U.S. Air Force B-21 bomber has taken yet another key technological step toward being ready for war, through integrated computer automation designed to streamline information, improve targeting and offer pilots organized warzone information in real-time. Air Force and Northrop Grumman developers recently completed an essential software-empowered process intended to bring greater levels of information processing, data management and new measures of computerized autonomy, according to published statements from Air Force Acquisition Executive Dr. William Roper. Through virtualization and software-hardware synergy, B-21 sensors, computers, and electronics can better scale, deploy and streamline procedural functions such as checking avionics specifics, measuring altitude and speed and integrating otherwise disparate pools sensor information.
The federal judge overseeing the fraught prosecution of former national security adviser Michael Flynn Monday defended his decision to review the Justice Department's effort to abandon the case, calling such a move "unprecedented." "It is unusual for a criminal defendant to claim innocence and move to withdraw his guilty plea after repeatedly swearing under oath that he committed the crime," attorneys for U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan said in documents filed in a D.C. appellate court. "It is unprecedented for an acting U.S. Attorney to contradict the solemn representations that career prosecutors made time and again, and undermine the district court's legal and factual findings, in moving on his own to dismiss the charge years after two different federal judges accepted the defendant's plea."
A soldier in Minneapolis opened fire on a speeding vehicle that posed a threat Sunday night -- the second known instance of a National Guard member discharging a weapon during the nationwide mass protests, the Minnesota National Guard commander said Monday. "Our soldier fired three rounds from his rifle in response to a direct threat" from a vehicle that drove at a position held by local law enforcement supported by the Guard, said Army Maj. Gen. Jon Jensen, adjutant general of the Minnesota National Guard. Read Next: Army Vet Lawmaker: Invoke Insurrection Act, Deploy Active-Duty Troops to Riots The driver ignored warnings to stop or turn away before the soldier opened fire, Jensen added.
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo openly hypothesized on Tuesday about overthrowing NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio after rampant looting and destruction swept across Manhattan on Monday night, overwhelming the NYPD and leaving the city looking like a war zone. De Blasio had doubled NYPD officers out on the streets to 8,000 on Monday night and imposed an 11 p.m. curfew after three nights of protests against police brutality were overshadowed by violence.
A global pandemic that has killed more than 100,000 Americans and now recent nationwide unrest after a brutal police killing of a black man have challenged both President Trump and his presumed Democratic challenger, Joe Biden, while also highlighting their different leadership styles. On Monday, Trump had no public events scheduled, and, in a call with state governors, lobbed insults and railed against their leadership, according to audio and reports that quickly leaked to the media. “Most of you are weak,” Trump told governors on the conference call.
A federal judge in Oklahoma has awarded ownership of the zoo made famous in Netflix's “Tiger King” docuseries to Joe Exotic's chief rival. In a ruling Monday, U.S. District Judge Scott Palk granted control of the Oklahoma zoo that was previously run by Joseph Maldonado-Passage — also known as Joe Exotic — to Big Cat Rescue Corp. The Florida group was founded by Carole Baskin, who also featured prominently in the hit Netflix series.