Trump blasts protesters against racial injustice, police brutality
U.S. President Donald Trump condemned anti-racism protesters on Friday during a campaign stop in the politically important state of New Hampshire, calling the demonstrators who sought to disrupt his White House speech on Thursday night “thugs”.
“You know what I say? Protesters, your ass. I don’t talk about my ass,” he said.
“They’re not protesters. Those aren’t protesters. Those are anarchists, they’re agitators, they’re rioters, they’re looters,” Trump told a crowd in an airport hangar.
“They’re just looking for trouble. This has nothing to do with George Floyd, has nothing to do with anything. They don’t even know who George Floyd is,” he said.
Trump has been criticized for not showing empathy in the wake of shootings and killings of Black men by police, including George Floyd, who died in police custody in Minneapolis in May, sparking anti-racism demonstrations worldwide.
New protests erupted in Kenosha, Wisconsin, this week after police officers shot Jacob Blake, another African-American man, multiple times in front of his children. He survived.
Thousands of people took part in a march in Washington on Friday to denounce racism.
Former US Vice President Joe Biden, the Democratic presidential nominee, and his running mate, vice presidential nominee Senator Kamala Harris, said Trump was making America less safe with his rhetoric and his handling of the coronavirus pandemic.
“The President incites violence, inspires white-supremacist shooters, and his failed COVID response is costing thousands of lives per day. When you look at the world right now, ask yourself: Do you feel safe in Trump’s America?” Biden tweeted.
“He (Trump) has been obsessed, I think, with spreading fear and using division to protect his own ego, and more fundamentally to erode the foundations of the democracy that he swore to defend,” Harris said at a fundraiser on Friday.
The U.N. human rights office on Friday condemned the shooting of African American man Jacob Blake white police and said the use of force was a violation of international law.
Agency spokesman Rupert Colville said the episode reaffirms the need for urgent action to eradicate links between structural racism and policing.