3.58pm GMT

Joe Biden has released a statement expressing “grief and outrage” at the Atlanta attacks and calling for new hate crimes legislation to protect Asian Americans and others targeted by a “rise of hate crimes exacerbated during the pandemic.”

The statement reads in part:

While we do not yet know motive, as I said last week, we condemn in the strongest possible terms the ongoing crisis of gender-based and anti-Asian violence that has long plagued our nation. I urge Congress to swiftly pass the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act, which would expedite the federal government’s response to the rise of hate crimes exacerbated during the pandemic, support state and local governments to improve hate crime reporting, and ensure that hate crimes information is more accessible to Asian American communities.

NEW: Pres. Biden: “I urge Congress to swiftly pass the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act, which would expedite the federal government’s response to the rise of hate crimes exacerbated during the pandemic.” https://t.co/41k97YI8Rl pic.twitter.com/XhbPQAHx6Q

3.51pm GMT

Local Oconee Radio Group news anchor Rahul Bali reports the names of some Asian-American legislators who are scheduled to meet with Biden and Harris this afternoon:

Asian-American Georgia State Lawmakers Meeting The President and Vice President Today

The current list includes State Senators Michelle Au, Sheikh Rahman, State Representatives Marvin Lim, Bee Nguyen and Sam Park. #gapol #GPBLawmakers @AuforGA @BeeForGeorgia @POTUS @VP pic.twitter.com/BXnpHGGM6C

3.29pm GMT

3.28pm GMT

‘We need to cry out’: Atlanta’s Asian American community reacts to shootings

Mike Jordan writes for the Guardian:

Related: ‘We need to cry out’: Atlanta’s Asian American community reacts to shootings

3.02pm GMT

Four previously unnamed victims of Tuesday’s shootings have been identified by the Fulton county medical examiner.

As first reported by CNN, the victims have been identified as:

Related: Paul Andre Michels: ‘very good-hearted’ handyman killed in Atlanta shootings

Related: Delaina Ashley Yaun: family and friends mourn ‘great mother, wife, daughter’

2.36pm GMT

Atlanta spa shootings spark new push for gun controls

Prominent gun control groups angered by the ease with which the alleged Atlanta spa shooter was able to acquire his weapon are calling on politicians to convert their outrage at the massacre into a renewed push for legislative reforms.

Related: Atlanta spa shootings spark new push for gun controls

2.20pm GMT

A study found that racist anti-Asian hashtags spiked after Trump first tweeted “Chinese virus,” the Washington Post has reported.

Racist anti-Asian hashtags spiked after Trump first tweeted ‘Chinese virus,’ study findshttps://t.co/HekHOvTlix

As the coronavirus spread across the globe last February, the World Health Organization urged people to avoid terms like the “Wuhan virus” or the “Chinese virus,” fearing it could spike a backlash against Asians.

President Donald Trump didn’t take the advice. On March 16, 2020, he first tweeted the phrase “Chinese virus.”

2.05pm GMT

‘Our community is bleeding’: Asian American lawmakers say violence has reached ‘crisis point’

Asian American lawmakers and leaders warned that violence and discrimination targeting their community have reached a “crisis point” following the shootings in Atlanta this week that killed eight people, including six women of Asian descent.

Related: ‘Our community is bleeding’: Asian American lawmakers say violence has reached ‘crisis point’

1.54pm GMT

Police patrols have increased in Asian areas. Not everyone is feeling safer

Police in cities across the country increased foot patrols in Asian neighborhoods following the shootings at three Asian-owned spas in the Atlanta area.

I’ve asked @SFPD to increase patrols in areas with a high number of Asian residents, visitors, and businesses immediately. More long-term efforts to will also be announced shortly. No one should have to live in fear that their race or ethnicity could make them a victim.

Related: Police patrols have increased in Asian areas. Not everyone is feeling safer

1.25pm GMT

Hello and welcome to our running coverage of a mass killing on Tuesday in three Atlanta-area massage parlors that left eight dead, including six women of Asian descent.

Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are to meet with Asian American leaders in Atlanta today. The president and vice-president had previously scheduled a trip to the city on Friday to meet with officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Related: Police patrols have increased in Asian areas. Not everyone is feeling safer

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https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/joebiden

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