Special Report | Justice for Trayvon Martin Solidarity Demo

Ceasefire's Terence Elliott-Cooper reports from today's demonstration at the US embassy in London, demanding justice for Trayvon Martin.

New in Ceasefire, Politics - Posted on Saturday, March 31, 2012 22:22 - 0 Comments

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The shooting of teenager Trayvon Martin last month in Florida sparked a global outcry, and earlier today a demonstration was held outside the US embassy in central London. Protesters wore hoodies to replicate the reason given by the killer, George Zimmerman, as to why he thought Trayvon looked suspicious. Zimmerman is yet to be prosecuted for killing 17 year old Trayvon in what was clearly a racially-motivated attack. Although Zimmerman is still trying to maintain an excuse of self defense, the evidence to the contrary seems compelling:  Martin was carrying nothing more than a packet of skittles and a bottle of ice tea, before being chased down by Zimmerman and shot.

The demonstration was organised by the Tottenham Defence Campaign and Campaign for justice, and featured impassioned speeches from Lee Jasper, Stafford Scott and comedienne Ava Vidal. Messages from George Galloway, elected Thursday as MP for Bradford West, and Dianne Abbott, MP for Hackney North were read out, as was one from Doreen Lawrence, the mother of Stephen Lawrence who murdered in a racist attack 19 years ago.

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Most speeches focused on the struggles of Black communities in the UK, ranging from the understanding of white supremacy and white privilege, to poverty, history, policing and identity. The recent recording of a young Black man being racially harassed following being physically abused by officers during last summer’s unrest.

The demonstration ended with flashmob performance to highlight the issues of stop and search, and on a reflective note that although the turnout was impressive, there should have been, as Stafford Scott remarked, ‘ten times the number of people here today’, if we are to tackle the global issue of state racism and oppression.

Photos by Samer Geris

Terence Elliott-Cooper is a writer and student activist.

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