Hundreds of people rally before George Floyd murder trial in the United States

According to US media reports, authorities have allocated at least $1 million to ensure security during the trial

Several hundred people demonstrated in Minneapolis, Minnesota, ahead of the beginning of the trial for the former police officer accused of killing African-American George Floyd in May 2020. The Star Tribune reported this on Sunday.

The action began in front of the Hennepin County courthouse, where the trial of ex-police officer Derek Chauvin is expected to begin on Monday with jury selection. A fence and concrete barriers have been lined up around the courthouse in advance. According to US media reports, authorities have allocated at least $1 million to ensure security during the trial.

The demonstration on Sunday lasted for several hours, with no incidents recorded. The protesters marched peacefully through the streets with placards in their hands, chanting slogans calling for justice for Floyd. Several activists, including several friends of the African-American man, carried a fake coffin strewn with flowers. Public figures, preachers and representatives of human rights organisations spoke at the event.

Floyd died after being severely choked by Chauvin when he was arrested on 25 May 2020. On 26 May, all four police officers who were involved in the arrest of the African-American man were fired. Chauvin was charged with manslaughter, the other three former police officers were charged with criminal negligence, aiding and abetting murder and accessory to manslaughter, among others. All four were previously released on bail.

After Floyd’s death, there were mass protests and riots in the US. The US National Guard was involved with local law enforcement agencies to restore calm. Curfews were imposed in some 40 cities, including Washington DC and New York.

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