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'Justice 4 George' rally on steps of the U.S. Embassy
OTTAWA -- Calls for justice in the death of George Floyd in Minnesota made its way to the steps of the U.S. Embassy in downtown Ottawa.
A group of five held a “Justice 4 George” sign in front of the embassy on Sussex Drive Saturday afternoon.
Floyd, a 46-year-old unarmed black man, died after being pinned to the ground by a police officer last Monday. Video showed the officer kneeling on Floyd’s neck for several minutes while Floyd said he couldn’t breathe.
The death sparked four days of protests in Minnesota and across the United States.
On Friday, former police officer Derek Chauvin was charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter. Chauvin and three other officers at the scene were fired from the Minneapolis Police Department earlier this week.
In Ottawa, the group outside the U.S. Embassy said they wanted to stand in solidarity with the protests happening in the United States.
“We are white, but we thought we would show up and start the work and show that we are outraged,” said Christina Bell, adding the group hopes this is the beginning of a larger conversation in Ottawa and across Canada.
Floyd’s death has sparked a call to action in Ottawa.
Activist Richard Sharpe will be part of a national virtual forum of community leaders on Sunday, coming together to talk about moving forward together.
“People have felt the psychological burden of anti-black racism their entire lives, and now it is felt really acutely in a way people need to talk it through. So there will probably be hundreds on the call (Sunday).”
A peaceful protest is scheduled for outside the U.S. Embassy on Sussex Drive on Friday, June 5 at 3 p.m.