Hundreds of people took to the streets in New York and other US cities to mark Juneteenth, a national holiday marking the abolition of slavery in the United States, a Sputnik correspondent reported.
Most rallies featured placards and slogans typical of the Black Lives Matter movement.
Small groups of 20 to 30 people marched in Manhattan. The rallies were proceeding in a calm atmosphere, and participants tried to stay in the shadows of buildings, shielding themselves from the heat.
On Thursday, US President Joe Biden signed a law that designated June 19 as the National Independence Day, or Juneteenth. The day honors the proclamation of freedom for slaves in Texas on June 19, 1865.
In New York, many were disappointed by that Mayor Bill de Blasio failed to deliver on his promise to make Juneteenth an official holiday. Only a few companies such as Twitter, Square and Nike gave employees a paid day off.