MOSCOW, August 15 (RIA Novosti) - Waves of protests are sweeping across America in response to the Ferguson shooting, sparking a national debate about blatant impunity of US police officers amid claims of growing abuse.
"There must be change, or else we will ensure that there will be more victims of unnecessary and excessive use of force by police. There must be justice," insists Steven W. Hawkins, the executive director of Amnesty International USA, in his article "Police brutality must be punished if we want real justice for Michael Brown," published in the Guardian.
The Chicago Tribune reports of hundreds of protesters in Chicago attended a rally dedicated to Michael Brown. "I feel personally like it could happen to me, it could happen to one of my friends,” said Adams, 27, as cited by the media outlet, "I want those things to stop." Thousands in New York have also demonstrated their solidarity with the protest movement, and a "National Moment of Silence 2014" has been organized via social media, according to the Indianapolis Star.
Two more cases have added fuel to the fire: three days ago during the clash in Ferguson two journalists - Wesley Lowery from The Washington Post and Ryan Reilly from The Huffington Post – were arrested and an Al Jazeera television crew was tear-gassed. The detailed description of the case published in the Washington Post by Wesley Lowry on August, 14, exposes brazen brutality of police officers.
In order to relieve the social tensions US President Obama has made a statement, addressing both sides of the conflict:
"There is never an excuse for violence against police or for those who would use this tragedy as a cover for vandalism or looting. There's also no excuse for police to use excessive force against peaceful protesters or to throw protesters in jail for lawfully exercising their First Amendment rights," Obama said as quoted by Reuters.
Although police pledged to change the "approach," it insisted that its tough measures carried out in order to crack down the protests were fully justified.
"We can’t individually go in and say, 'Excuse me sir, are you peacefully protesting? Are you throwing rocks? Are you throwing a Molotov cocktail?' It's a crowd. If the crowd is getting violent and you don't want to be violent, get out of the crowd," stated Ferguson police chief Thomas Jackson, according to the Huffington Post.
According to Steven W. Hawkins, the executive director of Amnesty International USA, a thorough investigation of all abuse cases should be held. "All officers responsible for abuses should be adequately disciplined and, where appropriate, prosecuted," he claimed, calling the US local and the federal authorities to maintain control over police and prevent new tragedies.