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01 Sep 2020 | 03:36 PM UTC

US: Police use smoke grenades and pepper spray as 19 protesters arrested in Portland August 31 /update 15

United States of America News Alert

Police us smoke grenades and pepper spray as 19 demonstrators arrested in Portland (Oregon) on August 19; further unrest expected in coming days

TIMEFRAME expected from 9/1/2020, 12:00 AM until 9/6/2020, 11:59 PM (America/Vancouver). COUNTRY/REGION Portland, Oregon

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Police used smoke grenades and pepper spray to control protesters in Portland (Oregon) on Monday, August 31, as unrest continued in the city. Around 200-300 people had gathered in the downtown area to march to the residence of Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler to demand that he resign. Petty vandalism was reported along the route of the march and police declared the gathering unlawful before later declaring it a riot. The area was cordoned off and police arrested 19 of the demonstrators.

Earlier on Monday, State police and law enforcement from neighboring suburbs were ordered to Portland to bolster city officers after months of continued unrest. Tensions are particularly high following the death of a demonstrator in downtown Portland during clashes between Black Lives Matter (BLM) demonstrators and pro-Trump counterdemonstrators on Saturday night, August 29. Authorities are carrying out a homicide investigation into the incident, but reports indicate that the deceased was a supporter of the right-wing Portland-based group Patriot Prayer. On Sunday, August 30, Oregon Governor Kate Brown announced a plan that she believes will allow peaceful protests to continue while cracking down on lawlessness.

Demonstrations are expected to continue in the coming days and weeks and an associated heightened security presence should be anticipated in the vicinity of protests.


Tensions and clashes between Black Lives Matter (BLM) protesters and counterprotesters have been recurrent in Portland for nearly three months.

Protests began worldwide after George Floyd died while being arrested by Minneapolis police officers on May 25. The four arresting police officers were subsequently fired and detained, and one has since been charged with second-degree murder. Protests spread to several cities across the US, with solidarity protests taking place throughout the world.

Tensions have been reignited by an incident in Kenosha (Wisconsin) on August 23, 2020, where Jacob Blake, an African American, was reportedly shot several times in the back by police officers while they were responding to an alleged domestic incident. Blake survived but was reportedly paralyzed from the waist down.


Those in Portland are advised to monitor developments, avoid all protests as a precaution, and adhere to all instructions issued by local authorities.


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