Keir Starmer writes to the Government on George Floyd and US Govt response

Keir Starmer, Leader of the Labour Party, has written to the Prime Minister calling on the Government to urge the United States and President Trump to “respect human rights and the fundamental democratic right to peaceful protest.”

In a letter sent today, Keir Starmer writes that the killing of George Floyd and the subsequent response of the US authorities to peaceful protests has “shone a spotlight on the racism, discrimination and injustice experienced by those from black and minority ethnic communities in the US and across the world.”

In addition to asking the Government to answer how they have raised concerns over the United States response to these events, Starmer asks what steps the Government is taking to reassure black communities in the UK.

Starmer ends the letter saying:

“The UK must be clear in showing that we understand this frustration and that we are ready to stand together with those who seek to tackle the injustice and inequality that remains within all our societies.”

Full text of the letter reads:

Dear Prime Minister,

In the House of Commons yesterday, I raised my shock and anger at the killing of George Floyd and the response of US authorities to the peaceful protests. This has shone a spotlight on the racism, discrimination and injustice experienced by those from black and minority ethnic communities in the US and across the world.

I welcome that you shared some of the concerns I raised with you and want to use this opportunity to explore what the British government is doing to urge the United States and President Trump to respect human rights and the fundamental democratic right to peaceful protest. I am sure that you share my strongly held belief that the UK has a moral obligation to speak out in defence of these values, no matter where in the world they are challenged.

With that in mind I would like to ask you the following questions:

Has the Government raised its concerns through official channels about the reaction so far from US authorities to peaceful protest?

What additional steps is the Government planning to reiterate the importance of a peaceful and proportionate response to the protests in the US?
What review is the Government conducting to ensure UK exports are not being used in the suppression of democratic rights?

Many of our own black citizens seeing these images also feel palpable anger and anxiety. What steps is the government taking to reassure black communities in the UK?

The death of George Floyd has justifiably prompted anger and a burning desire for fundamental change. The UK must be clear in showing that we understand this frustration and that we are ready to stand together with those who seek to tackle the injustice and inequality that remains within all our societies.

I look forward to your response,

Keir Starmer

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