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Image of George Floyd with words ‘You take my breath’ triggers internal police investigation

The Los Angeles Police Department has launched an internal investigation after an inappropriate image of George Floyd, the man killed in Minneapolis custody last year, was reportedly released in the department, officials said.

The image was stylized in an unspecified Valentine’s Day format with the words “You take my breath away,” according to a internal memo posted on Twitter and what Chef Michel Moore told the Los Angeles Times on Saturday.

“The department is aware of the inappropriate post and a complaint has been filed and due to personnel issues we are unable to comment further,” said Constable Rosario Cervantes, spokesperson for the police department. from Los Angeles. Another spokeswoman, Stacy D. Spell, confirmed that “an administrative staff investigation has been opened” but she could not comment on its specific details.

George Floyd, a black man, died in May after being handcuffed and pinned to the ground below the knee of Derek Chauvin, then a police officer in Minneapolis, for more than nine minutes. In the video footage, Mr. Floyd can be heard saying the words “I can’t breathe” more than 20 times. Mr. Chauvin, 44, has been charged with second degree murder and second degree manslaughter.

Mr. Floyd’s murder sparked a nationwide social justice movement as people marched for weeks in cities – including Los Angeles – across the country protesting police brutality and systemic racism. The marches were largely peaceful, although at times the protests turned into chaos and violence, with looting and the burning of buildings.

In Los Angeles, the protests were reminiscent of the riots that had occurred nearly 30 years earlier after four police officers were acquitted of assault for the beating of Rodney King. The beating, which happened in 1991, was filmed and was one of the first viral videos of a black man being abused by police.

The police department said on Twitter on Saturday that he was aware of the suggestions that the image of Mr. Floyd “was circulated in the department and that this image was in the workplace” and that it could have been “created by an employee of the department” .

The employee who brought the image to the attention of officials will be questioned, the ministry said.

He added that the ministry had not identified “any actual publication in the workplace or identified that it was actually an employee in our department who created the image”, but ordered the orders “to d ‘investigate the construction sites’.

If the image is found, “any employee or supervisor is welcome to take possession and identify those present,” the police department said. “The Department will have zero tolerance for this type of behavior.”

Chief Moore came under fire after he spoke of the looters and said a virtual briefing in June that Mr. Floyd’s death “is on their hands as much as on these officers”.

“And that’s a strong statement,” added Chief Moore.

He later apologized on Twitter: “Although I immediately corrected myself, I admit that my first words were terribly offensive. Looting is wrong, but it’s not the equivalent of murder and I didn’t want to equate the two. I deeply regret and humbly apologize for my qualification.

He added: “Let’s be clear: the police officers involved were responsible for the death of George Floyd.”

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti announced in June that his administration would seek to slash the police department’s budget from $ 100 million to $ 150 million and look for ways to spend it on other community programs.

Michael Levenson contributed reporting.

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Hakeem Jeffries wants Democrats to take a deep breath

Mr. Jeffries ‘own theory of the affair is that the Democrats’ “For the People” message is the right one. The best way to win back traditionally Democratic voters skinned by millions by Mr. Trump and bridge the divisions within his party’s own ranks, he argued, is to focus relentlessly on table issues like healthcare costs, prescription drug pricing, defeating Covid-19, creating jobs and tackling racial inequalities.

“It is unlikely, in the absence of the intimidating chair of the presidency, that someone who has mastered the art of grievance politics can have the same grip on a significant part of the country that Donald Trump has demonstrated,” did he declare. “As we move forward, Democrats have a real chance to win back some of these working class voters by making it clear that our implemented ideas will sort out the broken American contract and improve their quality of life.

It begins, he said, by “crushing the virus” and sending “direct relief” to American workers and business owners still reeling from the pandemic-stricken economy.

“This should be our priority and this will be the first day,” he said.

Faced with the likelihood of a Republican Senate, it will not be easy. Mr Jeffries said Democrats believe there will be opportunities for them to partner with Mr Biden and Republicans in the Senate to pass laws relating to prescription drug pricing, infrastructure spending and changes in penitentiary sentences and laws.

Party leaders have vowed a “deep dive” into Tuesday’s results to better understand how they lost five seats and counted and failed in almost every pickup opportunity they believed within reach.

Mr Jeffries said he was particularly concerned about why the public opinion poll that guides campaigns at nearly every level has consistently failed to capture the depth of support not only for Mr Trump, but for other Republicans on the ballot.

“One of the things we should be looking at is, is the ballot interrupted, or is the ballot only interrupted when Donald Trump is on the ballot,” Mr. Jeffries said, noting that the polls of public opinion had much more accurately predicted the 2018 Mid-Term Results. “Because if it is the latter, then there aren’t too many adjustments to be made in the future because Trump will nowhere be an electoralist in 2022.

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As the United States votes, an exhausted world holds its breath.

The US presidential election always attracts international attention, but this year has been an exceptional one: Mr. Trump has dominated news cycles and frayed nerves in almost every corner of the world like few leaders in history. Having lived through its impulsiveness and contempt for allies and alliances with adversaries, the world is on their toes waiting to see whether the United States chooses to stay on this difficult course.

No country has watched the US elections unfold with more anger and grievance than China – and few have more at stake. Tensions over trade, technology and the coronavirus have brought relations to their own. worst level since Washington first recognized the People’s Republic in 1979.

Even so, few Chinese officials seem to have much hope that a defeat for Mr. Trump would lead to improvement.

In Russia, which the CIA accused of mounting a clandestine effort to re-elect Mr. Trump, pro-Kremlin news outlets have highlighted the possibility of violence and chaos, allowing commentators who portray American democracy as rotten in the heart to declare the campaign a moment I told you.

For Europeans, a re-election of Trump would confirm that the United States has abandoned its leadership role in the Western alliance. Beyond questioning NATO membership, Mr. Trump called the European Union a competitor and rival, tried to create rifts between European countries and promote right-wing populism.

Many Europeans fear a more radical and even less constrained Mr. Trump in a second term, freer to act on his instincts – like those who have guided his response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

In the Middle East, where Mr. Trump’s foreign policy has had the greatest impact, the biggest impact of a Democratic victory might be leaving the autocratic leaders of Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Turkey with little friends in Washington, Columnist Hisham Melhem said. for the Lebanese newspaper Annahar Al Arabi.

Israel’s right-wing government received political favors from Trump’s White House and was supported to the end, resulting in normalization deals with three Arab countries that made the Middle East suddenly feel a little less hostile to the Jewish state.

But a Trump victory offers Israel no guarantees. A President Trump for a second term, free from his need to please pro-Israel evangelical voters, could rush into an overly lenient new deal with Iran, many Israelis worry.

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A shaken world holds its breath as the United States chooses its leader

But the public is weary of Mr. Trump’s flirtation “with a dictator who had his uncle executed, killed a South Korean citizen and blew up an inter-Korean liaison office,” said Cheon Seong-whun, former director of the Korean Institute for the National. Unification, a government-funded Seoul think tank. “Trump has shocked South Koreans on several occasions, putting them on constant alert,” he said. Polls show they favor Mr. Biden by nearly four to one.

Mr Trump continued to oppose other parts of the globe in the final weeks of the campaign, speculating that Egypt could “end up blowing up” a controversial $ 4.6 billion hydroelectric dam on the Nile that Ethiopia is building. The remarks escalated one of Africa’s most delicate disputes and further polarized opinions on the US election in both countries.

Many Ethiopians back Mr Biden by default, analysts said. But Yasser Rezk, an Egyptian journalist close to President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi – whom Mr. Trump once called “my favorite dictator” – said the Egyptians yearned for a victory for Trump. “Unfortunately, we don’t have a vote,” he said.

In the Middle East, where Mr. Trump’s foreign policy has had the greatest impact, the biggest impact of a Democratic victory might be leaving the autocratic leaders of Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Turkey with little friends in Washington, Columnist Hisham Melhem said. for the Lebanese newspaper Annahar Al Arabi.

This could push Saudi Arabia, which Biden called a “pariah state,” to offer to normalize its relations with Israel, if only to blunt calls to reassess Saudi-US relations, he said. -he declares.

Conversely, a Trump victory offers Israel no guarantees. A President Trump for a second term, free from his need to please pro-Israel evangelical voters, could rush into an overly lenient new deal with Iran, many Israelis worry.