Civil rights icon slams US president over rally response
American civil rights pioneer Jesse Jackson on Friday slammed President Donald Trump for insisting anti-racism protesters were equally to blame for the violence at a white supremacist rally last weekend.
Jackson also endorsed removals of Confederate statues and flags, as efforts to shed such symbols accelerated around the country. A Civil War-era monument was at the center of the Virginia rally.
"There is a sense of humiliation, insult by the president equating violent white supremacists, neo-Nazis and the KKK with civil rights demonstrators," Jackson said at a Chicago news conference.
"One marching to tear the country up. One marching to heal."
Trump has come under fire from Republicans and Democrats alike for his much-criticized response to the rally in the city of Charlottesville.
In the aftermath, the president lost the support of numerous CEOs and cities across the country decided to remove Confederate symbols from public spaces.
America's most populous city, New York, announced Thursday that it would remove two busts of Confederate army commanders from the "Hall of Fame for Great Americans" landmark.
Jackson -- who marched with Martin Luther King Jr in the 1960s -- called such steps "long overdue."
"The statues must go. The (Confederate) flag must go. One American flag is enough," Jackson said.
"There are no swastikas flying in Germany today. There are no statues of Hitler in Germany today."
© 2017 AFP