Friday, 10 July, 2020


Protests grip dozens of cities in response to George Floyd's death

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Noah Ferguson | 31 May, 2020, 04:41

"For that police station to be abandoned and taken over, I've never seen anything so disgusting and stupid in my life", Trump said when speaking briefly to reporters at the White House.

In Minnesota - where he was killed - the state's entire national guard was mobilised on Saturday to try to prevent further trouble.

In a statement Saturday, the Defense Department said U.S. Northern Command had been directed to increase the "alert status" of several units to be deployed at the request of Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz.

By the end of the night, the protesters had stolen about 15 barricades and left police to form a line of officers holding riot shields to keep back the swelling crowd.

After mentioning Chauvin's arrest, Beyoncé said more needs to be done. Hundreds of people tied to US protests were arrested Friday night for wide-ranging charges including arson and disorderly conduct in protests that state lawmakers have described as overwhelmingly peaceful.

Protesters in Houston, where Floyd grew up, included 19-year-old Jimmy Ohaz from the nearby city of Richmond, Texas: "My question is how many more, how many more?"

Protesters took to the streets across the country Friday night, many beginning as peaceful demonstrations that later took a more violent turn.

Police made between 50 to 100 arrests, a senior police official told The New York Times.

Hundreds of people rallied outside the mansion of the governor of Georgia.

According to The Associated Post news agency, the governor, Brian Kemp, was not home on Saturday evening. Dozens of officers pushed forward with their shields and fired off streams of pepper spray at protesters.

Community leaders and organisers have told Al Jazeera they want Keith Ellison to handle the case as they do not trust Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman to do so. In Virginia's capital, a police cruiser was set on fire outside Richmond police headquarters, and a city transit spokeswoman said a bus set ablaze was "a total loss", news outlets reported.

President Donald Trump on Saturday claimed that many Secret Service agents were "just waiting for action" and ready to unleash "the most vicious dogs, and the most ominous weapons, I have ever seen" if protesters angered by his response to George Floyd's death had crossed the White House's security fence. "We want to do it in a way that protects our residents, our neighborhoods, our communities".

"Some evil elements are literally interfusing themselves with the protesters to destroy, to cause arson, so that the whole community will have a low opinion of the protest, because they're not for justice for Mr. Floyd, they're against it", said Mr. Ellison at a Saturday press conference. Thinking the plainclothes officers were robbers, Walker said he discharged his gun, injuring one of the officers. "We need Justice for George Floyd", she begins. "This is the only way we're going to be heard".

Philadelphia Police tweeted: "The demonstrators exercising their first amendment rights at City Hall and the Art Museum did so peacefully". In a tweet today, Pittsburgh Public Safety said the protesters are mobile and others should expect road closures and traffic delays.

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