Supreme Court will not consider police immunity - Live updates

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The UN's top human rights body agreed to a request from African countries to urgently debate racism and police brutality on Wednesday following unrest in the US and beyond over George Floyd's death.

The killing of Rayshard Brooks by Atlanta police on June 13 reignited a push for protest in the city. Atlanta initially saw heavy protests after the death of George Floyd, prompting calls from public officials and celebrities for peaceful demonstrations. 

Floyd, a Black man, died on May 25 after a policeman knelt on his neck for nearly nine minutes. His death sparked calls across the US for policing reforms and triggered global protests.

Here are the latest updates:

Monday, June 15 14:03 - Supreme Court will not consider 'qualified immunity' case 

The US Supreme Court declined to hear a number of cases involving a legal defense called qualified immunity that can be used to shield government officials from lawsuits including police officers accused of excessive force.

The justices rejecting appeals in cases that had been pending before the court for months involving qualified immunity including a dispute over whether officers in Tennessee can be sued for using a dog on a man who says he had surrendered.

The decision to reject the cases comes as a national spotlight is once again trained on police use of force after the death of George Floyd, a Black man in Minneapolis who died after a white police officer knelt on his neck for nearly nine minutes. Democrats and Republicans in Washington have been pulling together their own versions of police reform legislation.

12:45 - Alabama to place removed Confederate statue in a museum 

A Confederate statue removed from Alabama's port city earlier this month has been relocated to a museum, the city’s mayor said.

The History Museum of Mobile has received the bronze likeness of Admiral Raphael Semmes, which stood in a middle of a downtown street near the Mobile waterfront for 120 years until June 5, and “will develop a plan to protect, preserve and display” the statue and “place it into the appropriate historic context," the city’s Mayor Sandy Stimpson said Sunday in multiple Twitter posts.

The decision involved input from city council members and “involved conversations with the Alabama Attorney General’s Office," Stimpson said on Twitter.

Another Confederate monument has been taken down:
Mobile, Alabama removed the statue of a Confederate admiral from its pedestal last night.

— John Bowles (@JPBowles) June 5, 2020

Attorney General Steve Marshall had sent a letter to the mayor after the statue's removal saying the city could be subject to a $25,000 fine for permanently moving the statue, an action that would violate a state law protecting monuments over 40 years old, reported.

The statue was dedicated in 1900, the year before Alabama ratified a Constitution that established white supremacy in the state by essentially disenfranchising blacks and poor whites.

12:35 GMT - British PM praises Black Lives Matter demonstrator who carried suspected far-right protester from danger

The instincts of the Black Lives Matter protester who emerged from chaotic scenes in London carrying an injured white man, suspected of being a far-right demonstrator, during scuffles with counter protesters on Saturday represented the best of us, Prime Minister Boris Johnson's spokesman said.

Patrick Hutchinson has been hailed as a hero for carrying the injured man over his shoulder, an image that has gone viral on social media after it was taken by a Reuters photographer.

"Patrick Hutchinson's instincts at that moment represent the best of us," the spokesman told reporters.  

We stopped somebody from being killed’: Story behind viral photo at London protests

10:40 GMT - Black Americans disproportionately die in police Taser confrontations: Reuters 

As police confront protesters across the US, they're turning to rubber bullets, pepper spray, tear gas and other weapons meant to minimise fatalities.

But some are using a weapon that has potential to kill: the Taser. When those encounters have turned fatal, black people make up a disproportionate share of those who die, according to a Reuters analysis.

Protest - Atlanta

"RIP Rayshard" is spray painted on a sign as as flames engulf a Wendy's restaurant  where Rayshard Brooks was shot and killed by police Friday evening following a struggle in the restaurant's drive-thru line [Brynn Anderson/AP Photo]

Reuters documented 1,081 cases through the end of 2018 in which people died after being shocked by police with a Taser. At least 32 percent of those who died were black, and at least 29 percent were white. African-Americans make up 14 percent of the US population, and non-Hispanic whites 60 percent

09:22 GMT - UN rights council agrees to debate on racism, police violence

The United Nations' top human   rights   body will hold an urgent debate on allegations of "systemic racism, police brutality and violence against peaceful protests" in the US on Wednesday, a statement said.

The decision by the UN Human Rights Council  followed a request last week by Burkina Faso on behalf of African countries, it said in a statement on Monday. 

"The death of George Floyd is unfortunately not an isolated incident," the letter said. 

#HRC43 has opened & starts w/ GD on item 5. It was decided that an urgent debate on the current racially inspired #HumanRights violations, systematic #racism, #PoliceBrutality & violence against peaceful protests to take place Wednesday, 17 June at 3 p.m.

— HRC SECRETARIAT (@UN_HRC) June 15, 2020

Catch up on previous updates here.

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