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Rioters in Portland on Thursday tried setting a police precinct on fire for the second consecutive night, just hours after Mayor and Police Commissioner Ted Wheeler accused them of attempted murder.⠀ ⠀ Wheeler, a Democrat, held a press conference and gave his most forceful condemnation of the nightly violence, which has continued nearly nonstop since late May.⠀ ⠀ Read this article: https://ept.ms/33PlKah⠀ ⠀ Get one month FREE FULL ACCESS to Epoch Digital.⠀ Sign up here: https://ept.ms/FreeMonth (no credit card needed)⠀ ⠀ GET THE APP: https://ept.ms/DownloadApp
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Acting Department of Homeland Security Chad Wolf @dhswolf tweeted Monday that in the ten days since federal law enforcement officials had been withdrawn from their posts in Portland, Oregon, local police had declared twelve official riots. Riots have taken place for months in Portland, ever since the killing of George Floyd in police custody in Minneapolis, Minnesota, triggered nationwide unrest and inspired a new wave of the Black Lives Matter movement to take to the streets. Portland has long been a hotbed of extremist and violent political activity, particularly on the left. Exactly two years ago, Activists camped outside the offices of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and attempted to trap agency employees inside the building. Mayor Ted Wheeler refused to act for weeks, leading ICE agents to accuse him of complicity in creating a “zone of terror.” A year later, Antifa activists attacked and seriously injured journalist Andy Ngô. The latest protests featured nightly violence against law enforcement, including vandalism and arson at the Mark O. Hatfield U.S. Courthouse, which the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) sent additional agents to protect. Rioters continued attacking federal officials, injuring many — including several who were blinded by laser beams. Democrats, including Wheeler, who joined the rioters, claimed that the presence of federal law enforcement provoked the unrest, and that the demonstrators were “peaceful protesters.” Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) called the federal officers “stormtroopers,” and House Majority Whip Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC) called them the “Gestapo.” On July 29, the Department of Homeland Security reached an agreement with the State of Oregon, under which Oregon State Police and local police would begin defending federal property in Portland, and federal officials would withdraw. However, Portland has seen riots continue since then, with violence directed at Portland Police precinct offices, the offices of the local police union, and even against local residents, who have been threatened and assaulted by Antifa activists.