Seattle Officials Vow To Dismantle CHOP’s ‘Autonomous Zone’ | USA News

Authorities in Seattle, Washington, alarmed by two weekend shootings and a third on Tuesday morning, plan to begin dismantling six blocks of streets in a part of the city occupied by activists protesting police brutality and inequality. racial in the United States.

One teenager was killed and at least two other people were injured in the weekend shootings in what is known as the Capitol Hill Organized Protest Zone (CHOP). The area is also known as CHAZ, or the “Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone”.

CHAZ Seattle

People invade the streets of the so-called CHOP zone east of downtown Seattle [Ian Morse/Al Jazeera]

The third shooting occurred around 5 am Tuesday in the same neighborhood east of downtown Seattle. A spokesman for Harborview Medical Center said the victim’s injuries were not fatal.

Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan said city authorities were working to end the CHOP zone and that the Seattle Police Department would soon return to a compound that its forces had largely abandoned in the area.

“SPD will return to the East Precinct. We will do so peacefully and in the near future,” Durkan said at a press conference on Monday.

Durkan condemned the violence in the area, writing on Twitter that it was “unacceptable” and that it distracted from the protesters’ stated goals of demanding racial equality and an end to police brutality.

United States President Donald Trump said the protests in the Seattle protest zone are led by “anarchists,” and harshly criticized city and Washington state leaders for allowing the CHOP zone to persist. . He said at a campaign rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, that the CHOP incidents are indicative of “what radical Democrats will do to our country.”

In Seattle, a ‘project’ towards a world without police (2:05)

On Tuesday, Trump promised to wipe out protesters seeking to establish a similar so-called “autonomous zone” in the nation’s capital, echoing conservative outrage at the possibility of free police enclaves emerging in major US cities. .

“There will never be an ‘Autonomous Zone’ in Washington, DC, as long as I am its President,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “If you try, you will meet serious force!”

Late Tuesday, Twitter flagged Trump’s tweet as a violation of his policies against abusive behavior.

During protests in Washington DC on Monday night, protesters spray-painted the phrase “BHAZ: Autonomous Zone of the Black House” on a piece of plywood on H Street and on the columns of the Episcopal Church of San Juan , where the president posed with a Bible earlier. this month.