Black Lives Matter Protests Erupt in London Calling to 'Abolish the Police'
Protesters claim 'riot is the language of the unheard' as George Floyd violence escalates
Black Lives Matter protests erupted in London Saturday with protesters calling to "abolish the police."
Protesters took to the streets of the British capital holding placards declaring that "riot is the language of the unheard" while promising more demonstrations across the UK to follow after the death of George Floyd in America this week.
Floyd died in police custody after a Minneapolis officer pinned him down with a knee on his neck.
Protests over Floyd's death spilled into violence in 30 US cities overnight.
Widespread looting and arson were seen in Floyd's hometown and nearby St.Paul.
In London, buses and cars traveling along Rye Lane in Peckham were forced to a standstill on Saturday afternoon when hundreds of Black Lives Matter protesters marched along the main road demanding justice over Floyd's slaying.
Yesterday's protests were a precursor to a series of demonstrations planned for the next week across Britain by the BLM movement, according to The Daily Mail.
Rallies will target Birmingham, Manchester, Cardiff, and Glasgow, as well as London.
Videos posted on social media show groups shouting "no justice, no peace" and "stop killing the mandem [friends]" as they marched and congregated in the south-east London district.
In another, the demonstrators can be heard shouting: "The UK is not innocent."
Some of those attending were seen carrying placards reading "BLM [Black Lives Matter]" and "solidarity," while others appeared to call for riots, like those seen in America over the past few days.
"RIOT is the language of the unheard," one placard read.
Footage of another protest in North London showed a smaller group of demonstrators marching and carrying a banner reading "abolish the police."
Most of those attending both protests were seen standing closer together than the two-meter recommended to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
Many could also be seen without face masks.
Today, the group plan to congregate at Trafalgar Square in central London where demonstrators will "kneel for Floyd."
"We are doing this to place pressure on the American government and show that this is a worldwide issue," a banner from the event reads.
Another is booked for next week in front of the US embassy to "bring justice for the multiple black people who have been killed and harmed by the police."
All of the banners remind attendants to wear face masks and maintain social distancing due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
Floyd's death in Minneapolis followed that of Ahmaud Arbery, a 25-year-old unarmed black man who was shot dead by two white men in Georgia earlier this month, and Breonna Taylor, a 26-year-old black woman who was fatally shot by Louisville cops in March.
The killings have reignited tensions between law enforcement and the black community in the US after a white Minneapolis cop Derek Chauvin was filmed kneeling on the 46-year-old's neck until he passed out and later died.
Last night, the chaos in Minneapolis was mirrored in cities across the nation on as National Guard units were called into Atlanta and put on standby in Washington DC, and two people were fatally shot in separate incidents in California and Detroit.
In Oakland, California, two officers with the Federal Protective Service - a part of Homeland Security created to protect government facilities - were shot, one fatally, in confrontations with protesters.
Police are investigating.
Meanwhile, a 19-year-old protester was shot dead in Detroit last night when an unknown subject fired into the crowd.
In Washington, DC, police and Secret Service agents were out in force around the White House before dozens of demonstrators gathered across the street in Lafayette Square chanting, "I can't breathe" - the words Floyd struggled to voice before he died.
The angry crowd at the White House grappled with Secret Service agents and attempted to breach their line of barricades surrounding the executive residence.
The crowd of hundreds chanted "No justice, no peace" and "Say his name: George Floyd."