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Decades after 11 people were killed in the infamous 1985 MOVE bombing where dozens of homes were destroyed in Philadelphia when police deployed a bomb, the city has issued its first official apology.

Tensions between police and MOVE, a Black liberation group, had been brewing since the 1970s and culminated with the deadly bombing in West Philadelphia on May 13, 1985 after city officials decided to evict the group.

Last week, the city council passed the resolution after the measure was introduced earlier in this year to coincide with the 35th anniversary.

The apology comes just weeks after officials in Greensboro, North Carolina, formally apologized for the deaths of five people during an attack by Ku Klux Klan members and the American Nazi Party, and Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey offered a formal apology to a survivor of the 1963 Birmingham church bombing.

Philadelphia Councilwoman Jamie Gauthier, who sponsored the measure, said the pain caused by the bombing has contributed to the ongoing distrust between police and residents — something that became evident when protests erupted after Walter Wallace Jr., a 27-year-old Black man, was killed by police last month.

“I don’t know that an apology is going to be enough to really address the emotional toll that those events took on those communities,” said Carter whose research focuses on racial and ethnic politics in the US.

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Source of original article: Black Star News (
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