The governor of Oregon, Kate Brown, has declared a weekend state of emergency in the city of Portland ahead of a protest organized by the Proud Boys right-wing group, which is expected to be held on Saturday, September 26. Past rallies involving the Proud Boys have resulted in violence with left-wing counter-protesters. Protesters are expected to gather at 12:00 (local time) at Delta Park, six miles from downtown Portland. A left-wing counter-protest is expected to take place simultaneously, with police stating they intend to keep the two protests separate. State troopers have been deployed to Portland to support local police, and a unified command structure among city and state law enforcement has been set up, circumventing a city ban on the use of tear gas.
A heightened security presence and localized disruptions to transport are to be expected in the vicinity of the demonstrations. Clashes between security forces and protesters, as well as between the two groups, are possible.
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.
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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