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Black Lives Matter rally held in Kyoto to honor George Floyd and denounce police brutality

Staff report, Kyodo

Black Lives Matter marches continued in Japan Sunday with a demonstration in Kyoto that drew participants from as far away as Okinawa and Hiroshima.

The Kyoto event followed similar rallies that took place in Osaka and Tokyo earlier in the month. The Black Lives Matter marches are taking place around the world to commemorate the death of George Floyd and condemn police brutality against minority groups.

The participants gathered at a park near Yasaka Shrine where they held a moment of silence for 8 minutes and 46 seconds, the amount of time that a white Minneapolis police officer pressed his knee against the back of Floyd’s neck, resulting in his death.

Chanting “Black Lives Matter,” the protesters marched towards the ancient capital’s city hall.

The organizers estimated about 1,000 people attended the event.

“Most of my friends are indifferent to racism. I hope this movement gives (people in Japan) opportunities to think about the issue.” said a female college student, 19, who joined the rally.

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