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Statement on the Second Anniversary of George Floyd’s Murder
May 25, 2022

Statement on the Second Anniversary of George Floyd’s Murder

On May 25, 2020, the world watched in horror as Mr. George Floyd, a Black American, was murdered by Minneapolis police officers. The case of Mr. Floyd is but one of numerous appalling examples of Black Americans who have been killed by police or subjected to police violence. His death was a stark reminder for Americans and the rest of the world that we still have a long road ahead to overcome racism, discrimination, and violence against Black Americans and other members of marginalized racial and ethnic communities. The ensuing protests galvanized a global call to action for social justice and ending the scourge of systemic racism and inequality in America and around the world. The vibrant movement for social justice this case and many others have generated has rightly demonstrated the most promising way to address these complex challenges is through legal accountability, a free press, and democracy.

People of African descent throughout the world face multiple intersecting barriers to the full enjoyment of human rights and dignity. To help address these issues, the United States fully supports the International Decade for People of African Descent’s goals to promote justice, recognition, and development, and we were early supporters of the establishment of the United Nations Permanent Forum on People of African Descent (PFPAD), a 10-member advisory body that will give voice to the dynamic challenges and aspirations of people of African descent globally. The United States has a long history of promoting democratic principles worldwide, which help create a more secure, stable, inclusive, and prosperous world. Part of our work in promoting democracy is advancing equity, justice, and equal opportunity for all people, at home and abroad, and we acknowledge we must do more.

Strengthening democracy at home is critical to our foreign policy vision as we cannot be a credible advocate for democratic values and human rights abroad if we are not demonstrating our commitment at home. Although democracy can be fragile at times, it is also inherently resilient and capable of self-correction and self-improvement. The United States is proud of the role we have played in advancing human rights and fundamental freedoms across the globe. We do so out of our deep conviction, enshrined in our Constitution and Bill of Rights and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, that every person is born free and equal in dignity and rights.

We believe that respect for human rights is essential to national wellbeing and international peace and stability. We do not claim perfection, and we, like all countries, must reckon with our complex history and shortcomings. As we do, we will continue striving toward a more inclusive and equitable future for all people, everywhere.

Signed by:

  • Ambassador Bathsheba Nell Crocker, Permanent Representative to the United Nations and Other International Organizations in Geneva
  • Ambassador Michèle Taylor, Permanent Representative to the United Nations Human Rights Council
  • Ambassador María L. Pagán, Permanent Representative to the World Trade Organization
  • Aud-Frances McKernan, Mission Geneva’s Diversity, Equity, Inclusivity, and Accessibility Chair and Acting Permanent Representative to the Conference on Disarmament