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Burning barricades, ‘sound weapon’: Protest at Oregon courthouse continues as arrests, injuries mount

The now-nightly standoff between BLM protesters and officers guarding the courthouse in downtown Portland remains intense. On Saturday, activists attempted to block the area, and accused their opponents of using a ‘sound weapon.’

The Hatfield Federal Courthouse in Portland, Oregon has been in the focus of protests against racism and police brutality for more than 40 days, with tension escalating into violence on numerous occasions. On Saturday night, the demonstrators used benches to block streets around the courthouse and lit several small fires.

The confrontation between the group besieging the building and its federal defenders became more intense after one of the protesters tried to use a hammer to break into a side door. In an intense short clash with the officers, he was apprehended and arrested, according to Portland Police.

At another point, the federal officers appeared to sound an alarm from inside the courthouse, which some of the protesters called a “sound weapon” due to its loud piercing noise.

Similar to many previous nights, police deployed tear gas to keep protesters away from the building. One canister reportedly hit an activist in the head, causing significant bleeding. The injured man was taken to hospital by ambulance.

Earlier on Friday, the ongoing Portland protest was criticized by President Donald Trump, who called the activists “a pretty wild group” and claimed the local authorities were preventing law enforcement from responding properly.

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