US & Canada

Kaepernick anthem protest: Player had 'death threats'

San Francisco 49ers safety Eric Reid and quarterback Colin Kaepernick kneel during the national anthem before an NFL football game on 13 September Image copyright AP
Image caption Quarterback Colin Kaepernick (R), alongside safety Eric Reid, kneeling during the national anthem

American football player Colin Kaepernick says he has received death threats over his refusal to stand for the national anthem, in protest against the plight of black people in the US.

The San Francisco 49ers quarterback has silently boycotted The Star-Spangled Banner in games, sitting or kneeling.

The threats came from different avenues, he added.

He said the killing of Terence Crutcher by police in Tulsa was a "perfect example of what this is about".

Video showed the 40-year-old had his hands in the air when he was shot next to his car during a police operation on Friday.

"It will be very telling about what happens to the officer that killed him. They shot and killed a man and walked around like it wasn't a human being," the player told journalists.

Death threats

When asked about the possibility of the threats being acted upon, he said: "If something like that were to happen, you've proved my point.

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Media captionKaepernick jersey used as door mat

"It'll be loud and clear why it happened."

Kaepernick's protest has stemmed from the racial tensions that increased across the nation this year amid a string of police killings and subsequent revenge attacks.

It has drawn strong reactions both in opposition and support.

Image copyright AP
Image caption The player says he will continue with protest until he sees improvements in US race relations

"I knew there were other things that came along with this when I first stood up and spoke about it. It's not something I haven't thought about," he said.

Meanwhile, he said he would donate $1m (£770,000) to local communities over the next 10 months.

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