US mobilizes National Guard troops to protect monuments in Washington

WION Web Team
Washington Published: Jun 25, 2020, 12:06 PM(IST)

US National Guards at President Trump's Tusla rally in Oklahoma Photograph:( AFP )

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US President Trump had threatened to use 'serious force' after protesters tried to topple a statue of former president Andrew Jackson

The United States has activated several hundred unarmed National Guard troops in Washington D.C. and put them on standby in order to protect national monuments.

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The US National Guard in a statement said that about 400 D.C. National Guard members had been activated after a request from the interior secretary. "They will support US Park Police at key monuments to prevent any defacing or destruction," the statement added.

The development comes after protesters tried to tear down a statue of former president Andrew Jackson in a park near the White House amid the Black Lives Matter protests.

US President Donald Trump had lashed out at protesters earlier saying: "Now they are looking at Jesus Christ, they are looking at George Washington, they are looking at Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson," while adding, "it's not going to happen, not going to happen as long as I am here."

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The US president had threatened to use "serious force" after protesters tried to topple a statue of former president Andrew Jackson.

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Interior secretary David Bernhardt in a tweet said: "We will protect these places with dispatch and severity!"

Protesters have targeted several statutes across America in the wake of George Floyd's death on May 25 who was killed by a Minneapolis cop after he knelt on his neck. Protesters have repeatedly targeted Civil War-era pro-slavery Confederate leaders.

The demonstrators have also called for the removal of Abraham Lincoln's "Emancipation" statute from Washington, D.C which depicts the former US president standing over a kneeling freed African-American man.

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