Amid anger and anxiety over two fatal police shootings in the United States, Black Lives Matter protests have erupted in Britain, where police patrol unarmed and have fatally shot very few people over the years.
In the days after the police shootings in Louisiana and Minnesota — and deadly sniper fire in Texas, where five officers were killed and others were wounded — hundreds have protested in solidarity.
In London, many have showed support — marching on Westminster, congregating in Windrush Square in Brixton and clogging Oxford Street — holding up signs saying “Stop Killing Us” and “How Many More,” and chanting “hands up, don’t shoot” and “black lives matter.” Others have been tweeting with the hashtag #stopkillingthemandem, Jamaican slang for a group of men that has been adopted by Britain’s youths.
The founder of the Black Lives Matter movement in London, Marayam Ali, told the Voice newspaper that she hopes the protests show that the U.K. supports “our American brothers and sisters.”
“By these people coming here to stand and unite, they are showing that they are against police brutality and that’s the most important thing,” she told the newspaper, adding: “I think people forget that racism is a worldwide thing. It’s still very prevalent. This is ultimately a cry for help.”