WEEK IN REVIEW

Week in Review: Anti-police protests spread to France and Alice Cooper rocks Covid-19

From left to right: A George Floyd memorial, the Canal-Saint-Martin in Paris, and rock legend Alice Cooper.
From left to right: A George Floyd memorial, the Canal-Saint-Martin in Paris, and rock legend Alice Cooper. © FRANCE 24

As anti-racism protests spread across the globe, Martin Luther King III tells FRANCE 24 that he has "never seen anything like this". Meanwhile, environmental activists warn of a “plastic pandemic” as masks and gloves are discarded en masse, rock legend Alice Cooper gives the coronavirus the shock-rock treatment and George Floyd's uncle says his nephew had a "big heart". 

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ARTICLES

In the wake of George Floyd's killing, a growing chorus to cut police funding

Just a few weeks ago, calls to defund police departments circulated primarily among activists. Today, increasing numbers of cities are taking measures to do so, and experts are waiting to see if a similar movement might take hold in Europe and elsewhere. 

The commercialisation of George Floyd: US firms look to capitalise on a movement

As protests against racism and police brutality have erupted across the United States and the world, many US companies have sought to capitalise on the moment by pledging solidarity with the protesters and speaking out against systemic racism. But some point out that firms have to go further to ensure equality within their own ranks.

French police under investigation for leaked racist comments

Leaked comments from a private Facebook group for police officers have fuelled outrage over racism among French law enforcement, prompting Paris prosecutors to open an investigation.

As George Floyd outrage spreads, France confronts its own demons

The global outrage triggered by George Floyd’s killing in the US has reignited a debate about policing in France’s ethnically diverse suburbs, where protesters say it is time the country wakes up to its own unspoken legacy of abuse and impunity.

A protester wears a protective mask reading "I can't breathe" at a rally in Paris on June 2, 2020.
A protester wears a protective mask reading "I can't breathe" at a rally in Paris on June 2, 2020. © Gonzalo Fuentes, REUTERS

Is Germany’s ‘colossal’ recovery plan a role model for other coronavirus-hit economies?

Germany became the first European country to announce a post-coronavirus economic stimulus package last week, allocating €130 billion that follows an initial roll-out of emergency measures to save the economy from the fallout of the pandemic. The ambitious plan could inspire other eurozone nations also desperate for a reboot.

Pro-Haftar powers ‘looking for alternatives’ after opponents seize all of western Libya

In seizing all of western Libya, the UN-recognised Government of National Accord put a stop to rebel commander Khalifa Haftar’s offensive. Haftar's international allies now favour a diplomatic solution, and there are signs that they are looking for an alternative partner in eastern Libya.

From ‘under control’ to ‘critical’: Four potential scenarios for Covid-19 in France

France’s national Scientific Council has envisioned four likely futures for the country’s Covid-19 epidemic, from a situation where the virus remains “under control” to a “critical” health crisis. FRANCE 24 takes a look at the possible scenarios.

China revels in US protests, sees unrest as PR opportunity

The unrest in the US over George Floyd’s death in custody has been seized by China and renewed discourse on “the end of the American era”. But Hong Kong’s defiant demonstration this week suggests Washington’s fall may not be Beijing’s gain.

A protester raises a fist near a fire during a demonstration outside the White House over the death of George Floyd on May 31, 2020.
A protester raises a fist near a fire during a demonstration outside the White House over the death of George Floyd on May 31, 2020. © Samuel Corum, AFP

 

VIDEO REPORTS

‘A new type of pollution’: Covid-19 waste ending up in world’s oceans

The Covid-19 crisis is leading to a new source of pollution as personal protective equipment (PPE), such as gloves and facemasks, makes its way into the world’s seas and oceans, a French environmental group has warned.

China removes pangolins from traditional medicine list

The pangolin, the animal some believe may have played a role in the outbreak of the Covid-19 virus, will no longer be authorised for use in traditional Chinese medicine, offering a vital lifeline to the rare and endangered species.

A pangolin in a cage in Surabaya, Indonesia, on March 27, 2019.
A pangolin in a cage in Surabaya, Indonesia, on March 27, 2019. © AFP / FRANCE 24

TV SHOWS ONLINE

THE INTERVIEW

Martin Luther King Jr's son on George Floyd protests: 'I've never seen anything like this'

Martin Luther King III, the son of Martin Luther King Jr, recounted the anger and frustration he felt upon learning about the death of George Floyd, an unarmed African American suffocated by a white police officer. King said that while his was one on a long list of such killings, Floyd's murder has galvanised the nation and the world in a way he has never witnessed before.

THE INTERVIEW
THE INTERVIEW © FRANCE 24

 

George Floyd had a ‘big heart’, his uncle tells FRANCE 24

Protests against the death of George Floyd in police custody on May 25 have erupted across the United States and around the world. But it is in North Carolina that George Floyd was born and where much of his family has lived for generations. His uncle Roger Floyd agreed to sit down with FRANCE 24 in a quiet hotel room away from the protests.

Roger Floyd
Roger Floyd © France 24

 

INSIDE THE AMERICAS

Racial violence in the US: A never-ending story?

This week, Inside the Americas focuses on the conversation ignited in the United States by George Floyd's death while in police custody. The 46-year-old unarmed African American was killed after a white police officer knelt on his neck for nearly nine minutes. Footage of Floyd's death sparked protests around the world calling for an end to police brutality and systemic racism.

Rosa Parks in 1955. She became a key figure of the civil rights movement for refusing to give up her seat to a white passenger on a bus.
Rosa Parks in 1955. She became a key figure of the civil rights movement for refusing to give up her seat to a white passenger on a bus. © FRANCE 24

 

PEOPLE & PROFIT

Why the Covid-19 crisis is exacerbating racial inequality

The global protests following the death of George Floyd have put a spotlight on racial disparities in the United States and around the world. We take a closer look at the economic inequalities faced by African Americans and how Covid-19 has affected different communities in different ways. We also discuss the situation in France, where studies have found evidence of discrimination in hiring practices.

FRENCH CONNECTIONS

'La' Covid-19: How coronavirus has affected the French language

Covid-19 may have a long-term impact on French society, starting with the language. According to the Académie française, the official guard dog of the French language, Covid-19 is feminine. What other new words and expressions have popped up in the wake of the pandemic? Meanwhile, as cafés and restaurants cautiously re-open, many French people are thrilled to return to a semblance of normalcy.

DOWN TO EARTH

Masks: The new plastic epidemic

Designed to shield us from the health crisis, the number of masks and gloves discarded in public spaces are contributing to another epidemic: plastic pollution. France has just doubled fines for littering face masks from €68 to €135. This comes after disheartening underwater images of surgical masks and latex gloves on the Mediterranean seabed.

Down to Earth
Down to Earth © FRANCE 24

 

ENCORE!

C is for Covid-19: The children's books getting us through a pandemic

From Oscar-winning actor Donald Sutherland narrating the new children's book "Rainbows in Windows" that explains the global pandemic, to Dolly Parton reading weekly bedtime stories to give parents a break from home-schooling, children's books have become more important than ever in recent months. Comics and cartoons are a powerful way to teach kids about Covid-19 but also to help them escape from the real world.

Shock rocker Alice Cooper takes on the coronavirus in his new song

Whether it was cutting off his own head on stage with a guillotine or false rumours that he bit the head of a live chicken on stage, his theatrical shows caused a scandal in the early 1970s. Thirty albums later and with 50 million records sold – first as the Alice Cooper band and later as a solo act – he's given us classic rock anthems like "I'm Eighteen", "School's Out" and "Billion Dollar Babies". Alice Cooper speaks about his rallying anthem "Don't Give Up", how he has shock-rocked audiences for five decades – and that chicken incident.

Alice Cooper speaks to FRANCE 24 about his rallying anthem "Don't Give Up".
Alice Cooper speaks to FRANCE 24 about his rallying anthem "Don't Give Up". © FRANCE 24

 

YOU ARE HERE

A glimpse of France's fables and legends

France is packed with legends. In the southern Hérault region, the miraculous fountain of Lunas is believed to have a healing effect on the eyes and those who come regularly, equipped with handkerchiefs, make a ritual of it. Meanwhile, at the highest point of Brittany (altitude 385 metres), the Arrée Mountains are populated by strange-looking creatures: the Korrigans.

Discovering Paris's Canal Saint-Martin

Inaugurated in 1825, the Canal Saint-Martin stretches over five districts of eastern Paris. Once essential for transporting goods, it's mainly used today by tour boats and pleasure cruises. Along its four kilometres, the canal lets both Parisians and tourists discover the French capital from a different perspective.

Canal Saint Martin
Canal Saint Martin © Screen grab, France 24

THE 51 PERCENT

Pointing the finger: Why are women blamed for everything?

We take a look at why women are consistently blamed for the crimes committed against them and speak to British academic Jessica Taylor, who has written a book on that very subject. Also, how women seeking an abortion in Turkey face considerable risks and many hurdles despite the procedure being legal.

FASHION

Fashion prizes in the time of Covid-19

Fashion prizes have long given young designers a chance to prove their worth. The prestigious Open My Med award, financed by the Maison Mode Méditerranée, offers designers the opportunity for mentoring and exposure. But things are very different in the time of Covid-19. Among this year’s winners, Flore Girard de Langlade in Marseille and Romzy in Dakar are making the best of a bad situation, while Quoï Alexander in Paris is questioning whether he still has a future in fashion. 

Romzy in Dakar is among the winners of this year's Open My Med award.
Romzy in Dakar is among the winners of this year's Open My Med award. © mediatv / ROMZY

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