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5 Jul, 2020 07:40

Riot declared in Portland for THIRD night this week as protesters besiege federal courthouse

Riot declared in Portland for THIRD night this week as protesters besiege federal courthouse

Portland police used tear gas against protesters who had erected barricades and shot fireworks at the Hatfield Federal Courthouse in the city. Friday was the third riot in Portland this week.

Several hundred activists marched on Friday evening into the streets around the courthouse in downtown Portland, bearing makeshift shields and diverse materials they used to erect some barricades, police said.

In the early hours of Saturday, the situation became increasingly volatile, with Portland police declaring a riot at around 4am local time. Officers deployed tear gas and pushed the protesters away from the courthouse.

Earlier in the night, a group of protesters burned several small fires and shot fireworks in the air and at the courthouse building itself.

They also used powerful lasers and flashlights to blind CCTV cameras. US flags were burned at the site, as well as on the spot where the city's iconic elk statue used to stand before being damaged on a previous night of protests.

Police said protesters pelted them with projectiles and pointed lasers in officers' eyes. Several people have been arrested.

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