Seattle mayor says federal agents are leaving city
Federal agents that had been deployed to Seattle last week to protect federal buildings from anticipated protests have left the city, Mayor Jenny Durkan (D) said late Tuesday.
“[The Department of Homeland Security] notified me that federal forces deployed to Seattle have demobilized & left,” Durkan tweeted. “The President’s actions to target Democratic cities with federal forces is chilling and increased violence in Portland, Seattle & other cities – exactly what the President intended.”
Policing decisions in Seattle should be made by Chief @CarmenBest – not @realDonaldTrump. It’s why federal law enforcement officials as well as Democratic and Republican former heads of @DHSgov are raising alarm bells.
— Mayor Jenny Durkan (@MayorJenny) July 28, 2020
The mayor added that Seattle Police Chief Carmen Best is in charge of the city’s policing, not President Trump. Durkan also denounced the continued federal occupation in Portland, Ore.
The rhetoric surrounding the nationwide Black Lives Matter protests — which were catalyzed by the police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis at the end of May — is decidedly split among the country’s political parties.
Democratic lawmakers like Durkan have denounced the violence that has occurred at the protests, while recognizing the legitimacy of the reason behind the ferocious protests: Police brutality and systemic racism in the U.S.
The Trump administration, meanwhile, has taken an aggressive stance toward protesters. Trump, acting Homeland Security Secretary Chad Wolf and Attorney General William Barr have all labeled the protesters as rioters and anarchists.
That said, The Associated Press is reporting that the White House is in talks of removing the federal troops from Portland that have been in the city since late June to protect the federal courthouse that has been damaged by protests.
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