POLITICS

Obama Calls For Americans To Help Heal The Rifts Between Law Enforcement And Communities

05/15/2015 01:16 pm ET | Updated May 15, 2015

President Barack Obama called on Americans to help "heal the rifts" between law enforcement and communities while giving remarks at the National Peace Officers' Memorial Service at the U.S. Capitol on Friday.

"It takes a special kind of courage to be a peace officer," Obama said. "To be the one people turn to in their most desperate moments. To be willing to run into a dangerous situation, when everyone else is running the other way."

May 15 is Peace Officers Memorial Day, which is part of National Police Week. Obama and others marked the occasion after a year of strained relations between police and citizens around the U.S.

"We can work harder, as a nation, to heal the rifts that still exist in some places between law enforcement and the people you risk your lives to protect," Obama added later. "We owe it to all of you who wear the badge with honor. And we owe it to your fellow officers who gave their last full measure of devotion."

Obama also commented on those who died in a Marine helicopter crash that occurred amid earthquake relief in Nepal earlier this week.

"They went to that remote land to help people who suffered devastating losses in a terrible earthquake," Obama said. "They represent a truth that guides our work around the world -- when our friends are in need, America helps."

Watch a video of Obama above.

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