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Minneapolis bids George Floyd Goodbye

Hundreds gathered on Thursday for the first of several planned memorials for George Floyd, an unarmed Black man killed by police in Minneapolis, Minnesota last week.

The Minneapolis event kicked off a week of services to honour Floyd, whose death on May 25, captured on video, set off protests across the United States, and worldwide.

The memorial, attended by family, friends and prominent civil rights figures, was livestreamed, starting at 1pm (18:00 GMT). Thousands gathered in a park nearby. Reverend Al Sharpton was scheduled to give the eulogy.

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A painting of George Floyd in Nairobi, Kenya. Credit: Aljazeera.

On Thursday “we will lay out how we will mobilise nationally in the name of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and more”, Sharpton tweeted on Wednesday, referring to the names of Black men and women killed by police or former law enforcement.

Sharpton’s sentiment was shared by residents in Minneapolis, many of whom have attended daily protests, demanding justice for Floyd and an end to police violence.

“I’m not only there for the people that died of police shootings, but I’m there for the 401 years of slavery and oppression – systematic oppression that my people had to deal with, and are still dealing with,” said Sada Cooper, a Minneapolis resident.

“Like, when is it going to end?” she asked.

Carlos Flemming said attending the memorial was not only a way to honour Floyd, but an “opportunity to take back this space and take back the narrative of what happened”.

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