Federals deploy tear gas in Portland protests as fighting continues

Demonstrations in Portland are only growing after weeks of controversial clashes between protesters and federal agents who have seen fireworks, lasers, tear gas, and leaf blowers unfurl.

The crowd of at least 4,000 protesters took to the streets on Friday night and early Saturday morning was the largest since the first weeks of the protests, which began in May after the death of George Floyd, the Oregonian reported.

Thousands of protesters chanted “It is a revolution!” the newspaper said.

In addition to the “mothers wall” that joined the protests in recent days, groups of military veterinarians flocked on Friday night.

Protesters launched fireworks in the latest conflict, and officers responded with rounds of tear gas and peppercorns.

Each side had leaf blowers to divert tear gas to the other near federal court where protesters shook a fence surrounding the building, according to reports.

Federal agents marched in a row down the street around 2:30 a.m. and fired tear gas at close range to clear the remaining protesters, the Associated Press reported.

Daniel Pereyo received tear gas during the demonstration and told the AP “It is extremely painful.”

“It is not the worst pain in the world, but it is annoying and distracting,” he said.

The Federal Protection Service said the officers had been injured.

Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler, who received tear gas when he joined a crowd of protesters, has maintained that federal agents are escalating the violence. President Trump has praised his presence.

The feds have also cracked down on any drone flying within the Portland city limits for “special security reasons” until August 16, the Oregonian reported.