Selasa, 01 September 2020

Donald Trump visits scene of Kenosha riots over Jacob Blake shooting, despite pleas for him to stay away - ABC News

US President Donald Trump has toured the "destruction" left by riots in the wake of the police shooting of a black man in Kenosha, despite local authorities urging him to stay away.

Soon after arriving in the city for a visit made over the objections of state and local leaders, Mr Trump toured a block badly damaged by violence and fire.

He spoke to the owners of a century-old furniture store that had been destroyed and criticised Democratic leaders in charge of Kenosha and Wisconsin.

"They just don't want us to come in and then destruction is done," said Mr Trump, who had offered to send in federal enforcements.

The city has been embroiled in protests since the August 23 shooting of Jacob Blake, a black man shot seven times in the back by police as he was getting into a car while they were trying to arrest him.

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Mr Blake appeared to be shot multiple times in the back at close range.

On the eve of his visit, Mr Trump defended a teenage supporter accused of fatally shooting two men at a demonstration in Kenosha last week.

The President also accused Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden of siding with "anarchists" and "rioters" in the unrest.

Yesterday Mr Biden denounced the "senseless violence of looting and burning and destruction of property".

"I want to be clear about this: Rioting is not protesting. Looting is not protesting. Setting fires is not protesting. None of this is protesting, it’s lawlessness, plain and simple," Mr Biden said.

Trump might 'hinder healing': Wisconsin Governor

Flames engulf the Community Corrections Division building as an American flag flutters on a pole in Kenosha.
The shooting kicked off destructive riots in Kenosha.(Reuters: Stephen Maturen)

Mr Trump's motorcade passed a mix of supporters, many holding American flags, and protesters, some carrying signs that read Black Lives Matter.

As a massive police presence, including several armoured vehicles, secured the area, barricades were set up along several of the city's major thoroughfares to contain onlookers.

Democratic Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers, who deployed the National Guard to quell demonstrations in response to the shooting, had pleaded with Mr Trump to stay away for fear of straining tensions further.

"I am concerned your presence will only hinder our healing," Mr Evers wrote in a letter to Mr Trump.

Mr Biden has assailed Mr Trump over the deadly protests that have sprung up on his watch.

But Mr Trump has been vocal in supporting law enforcement and offered himself as the leader best positioned to keep Americans safe.


He insisted his appearance in Kenosha would "increase enthusiasm" in Wisconsin, one of several key battleground states in the upcoming presidential race.

The White House said he "wants to visit hurting Americans".

'We need justice and relief'

Mr Trump did attempt to arrange a meeting with the family of Mr Blake, according to family lawyers.

Mr Trump said he would not meet with Mr Blake's relatives because of a request that a family lawyer be involved.

Headshot of man wearing security gear
Jacob Blake may not be able to walk as a result of the shooting.(Supplied)

Mr Biden's campaign has said the candidate would go to Wisconsin soon but has not disclosed details.

He and his running mate Kamala Harris both spoke with Mr Blake's father.

Mr Blake's family planned a Tuesday "community celebration" to correspond with Mr Trump's visit.

"We need justice and relief for our vibrant community."


The US National Association for the Advancement of Colored People said neither candidate should visit the Wisconsin city as tension simmers.


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2020-09-01 20:00:00Z

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