Two officers shot in Ferguson at anti-racism protest

(AGI) Ferguson (Missouri, USA), March 12 - The wounding of twopolice officers hit by gunfire during an anti-racismdemonstration caused an upsurge of tensions in Ferguson, on theoutskirts of St. Louis, where last August a police officerkilled an unarmed 18-year-old African-American boy. The twoofficers were shot in front of the police station of the townof Missouri in the early hours of Thursday, a few hours afterthe resignation of the local police chief following a report ofthe Justice Department that accused local authorities ofharassment and discrimination against African Americans. None of the injured

(AGI) Ferguson (Missouri, USA), March 12 - The wounding of twopolice officers hit by gunfire during an anti-racismdemonstration caused an upsurge of tensions in Ferguson, on theoutskirts of St. Louis, where last August a police officerkilled an unarmed 18-year-old African-American boy. The twoofficers were shot in front of the police station of the townof Missouri in the early hours of Thursday, a few hours afterthe resignation of the local police chief following a report ofthe Justice Department that accused local authorities ofharassment and discrimination against African Americans. None of the injured officers worked in Ferguson: a 41-year-oldofficer who was shot in the shoulder serves at the countypolice, the other, a 32-year-old man who was wounded in theface, is an officer at Webster Groves, in the county of St.Louis. The injuries were described as "very serious" but bothmen are conscious. The demonstration was held to celebratethe resignation of Thomas Jackson after weeks of calls for himto step down by civil rights activists. Jackson was thesubject of harsh criticism in the report of the JusticeDepartment on discrimination in the suburb, where violentprotests broke out after the death of the 18-year-old MichaelBrown. Before Jackson two others resigned: Mayor John Shaw, whohad held the position since 2007, and municipal judge Ronald J.Brockmeyer. The demonstration, attended by dozens ofpeople, began peacefully. But disorder soon broke out and sometwenty police officer in riot gear intervened and detained twopeople. Around midnight, when many protesters had already left,gunshots were heard. For the moment no suspects have beenarrested, said St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar. "Idon't know who did the shooting, ... but somehow they wereembedded in that group of folks," Belmar said. But thedemonstrators told a different version of the events. "Theshooter was not with the protesters. The shooter was atop thehill," activist DeRay McKesson said on Twitter. Thedemonstrations in front of the police station in SouthFlorissant Road have become a routine, because the report ofthe Justice Department has found clear evidence ofdiscriminatory behaviour against the African-Americanpopulation of Ferguson, both in the courts and the policestation. According to the report of the department headed byEric Holder, who is African-American, in the last two years,the 67 percent of African-American citizens of the city werethe subject of 85 percent of traffic controls, 93 percent ofarrests and 88 percent of the cases in which the police usedforce. AGI . .