17 June 2020. Global Times: As the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement sweeps the US following the police killing of African American George Floyd, Permanent Representative of the African Union to China Rahamtalla Mohamed Osman said discrimination in the US against black people must be corrected.
Ambassador Osman told the Global Times in an exclusive interview that the current BLM movement is even stronger than the civil rights movement led by Martin Luther King Jr. back in 1960s and he believes it would make real change in the US.
What happened in the US recently is related to the history of discrimination against black people in the US. While Martin Luther King Jr. and other people tried their best to create a difference for African Americans, discrimination still exists, he said.
“What had happened recently for this incident reflects that the current situation still needs to be rectified and that the blacks are not yet having all their rights in the US.”
He added that when it comes to COVID-19, black people are among the worst affected groups in the US due to the health situations they face.
APM Research Lab data released in May showed African Americans died from the coronavirus at a rate of almost three times the rate of white people in the US, read a Guardian report.
Following the murder of Floyd on May 25, the Chairperson of the African Union Commission Moussa Faki Mahamat also issued a statement on May 29 in which he strongly condemns the killing that occurred in the US at the hands of law enforcement officers. He further urges the authorities in the US to intensify their efforts to ensure the total elimination of all forms of discrimination based on race or ethnic origin.
Osman noted the AU considers all citizens of African origin all over the world are their citizens and that they care for them. “So what had happened to the Africans in the US is of concern to us. This is why the African Union has issued a statement denouncing what had happened to the black community in the US.”
The diplomat said the movement has the support of the international community as it was timely exposed to the world after media coverage.
“All these demonstrations all over the world will definitely have an effect on the internal situation in the US,” he told the Global Times.