Over 100 immigrants pepper-sprayed at ICE detention center during protest

Over 100 immigrants pepper-sprayed at ICE detention center during protest
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More than 100 immigrants being held at an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detention center in Louisiana were pepper-sprayed as they protested in the center’s yard.

The incident at the ICE Processing Center in Pine Prairie, La., took place over the weekend, according to BuzzFeed News, which cited a source familiar with the matter.

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The immigrants being held were demonstrating in the center’s yard when they were pepper-sprayed in an effort to have them disperse, according to the publication. They were then reportedly taken to a separate part of the facility to decontaminate.

"On Friday evening, at the Pine Prairie facility, a group of ICE detainees refused to depart the outdoor recreation area as directed. Facility staff and ICE officers gave the detainees multiple opportunities to disperse and allow for the restoration of orderly operations," a spokesperson for ICE told The Hill.

"When the ICE detainees refused to comply, facility staff and ICE officers deployed pepper spray to disperse the group. Medical staff evaluated all individuals who came in contact with the pepper spray; no detainee or staff injuries were reported."

BuzzFeed noted the incident at Pine Prairie comes just days after roughly 30 immigrants were reportedly pepper-sprayed at a separate detention facility in Louisiana.

ICE facilities have come under increased scrutiny in recent months as some lawmakers and immigrant advocates have attacked immigration officials and the Trump administration over what they describe as poor conditions.

Trump administration and immigration officials have defended the conditions of their facilities. 

Updated: Aug. 7 at 12:02 p.m.