Health experts in the USA have raised concerns over the spread of coronavirus in the country as thousands of people have ascended the streets of the country since the past week over the brute force used by police on George Floyd, who died while in police custody. Health guidelines state that individuals have to maintain physical distancing and have to wear masks.
Coronavirus concerns grow
However, those guidelines have been ignored during the week-long protests which has seen the state Governors deploy the US National Guard to stop the protests.
Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms has urged her city’s demonstrators to seek tests for the virus as soon as possible. “If you were out protesting last night, you probably need to go get a COVID test this week. There is still a pandemic in America that’s killing black and brown people at higher numbers,” Bottoms said at a news conference on Saturday.
Coronavirus has infected 18,11,357 people across the country with 1,05,160 deaths due to the virus.
George Floyd’s death
Floyd suffered a cardiac arrest while being restrained by Minneapolis police, the post mortem report found. The report stated that Floyd died as “cardiopulmonary arrest complicating law enforcement subdual, restraint, and neck compression”. A video went viral in which a white police officer is seen kneeling on Floyd’s neck despite Floyd’s continuous plea stating that he could not breathe. The officer, Derek Chauvin, has been charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter and is scheduled to appear in court this week. Three other police officers have been fired.
For six consecutive days, there have been widespread protests around the United States. Tensions and violence continue to escalate in many areas including outside White House, with protesters demanding justice for Georgy Floyd and his family.
During a press briefing, White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany said that the President has made it clear that “violence, looting, anarchy, lawlessness will not be tolerated.” She further added that the Trump administration will deploy more federal resources throughout the country to reduce violence linked to recent anti-racism protests.
Speaking at the briefing, she said, “There will be additional federal assets deployed across the nation,” McEnany said. “There will be a central command centre in conjunction with the state and local governments that will include General [Mark] Milley, Secretary [Mark] Esper, and [Attorney General William] Barr.” According to McEnany, the US President wants the National Guard in partnership with local law enforcement to “dominate the streets” in US communities in order to restore peace amid the protests.