Fatal police shootings reflect serious problem in US: Obama

US President Barack Obama says all Americans should be troubled by the recent police shootings of black men in Minnesota and Louisiana which were captured on video and prompted a social media outcry.
US president Barack Obama has spoken about the latest shooting of a black motorist by a police officer, saying such incidents are not isolated.
US president Barack Obama has spoken about the latest shooting of a black motorist by a police officer, saying such incidents are not isolated.PHOTO: REUTERS

WASHINGTON (AFP) - The fatal police shootings this week of two American black men reveal fault lines in relations between law enforcement and the communities they serve, and Americans must work together to heal the divisions, President Barack Obama said on Thursday (July 7).

"What's clear is that these fatal shootings are not isolated incidents," Obama said in a statement on Facebook.

"They are symptomatic of the broader challenges within our criminal justice system, the racial disparities that appear across the system year after year, and the resulting lack of trust that exists between law enforcement and too many of the communities they serve."

He added: "To admit we've got a serious problem in no way contradicts our respect and appreciation for the vast majority of police officers who put their lives on the line to protect us every single day."