Amnesty International Takes ‘Unprecedented’ Step in Sending Delegation to Ferguson

FERGUSON, Mo. (KMOX) – Human rights group Amnesty International has taken “unprecedented” action to deal with unrest in Ferguson by sending a delegation that has never before been deployed inside the United States.

The organization has had members on the ground in Ferguson since Thursday, in the wake of the fatal shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown by a Ferguson police officer. According to a news release, the 12-person delegation is there to “observe police and protester activity, gather testimony, seek meetings with officials and offer support to the community.”

Organizers will also train local activists on methods of non-violent protest.

“Law enforcement, from the FBI to state and local police, are obligated to respect and uphold the human rights of our communities,” Amnesty International USA’s executive director, Steven W. Hawkins, said. “The U.S. cannot continue to allow those obligated and duty-bound to protect to become those who their community fears most.”

Hawkins said they will remain in Missouri until they “have a clear picture of what is taking place on the ground, and are able to work effectively with local activists on how to defend human rights at home.”

On Wednesday, August 13, Hawkins wrote to the Ferguson Police Department to express concern over the shooting of Michael Brown, as well as the use of tear gas and rubber bullets during protests.

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