US protests: Donald Trump says military won’t intervene in George Floyd riots ‘for now’
The Trump administration says it will not invoke federal authority over the National Guard for now, as angry protesters riot in cities across the United States.
US President Donald Trump had 24 hours earlier said that states and cities must get “much tougher” on anti-police protests or the federal government would step in, including by using the military and making arrests.
“We’re not going to federalise the Guard at this time,” said National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien.
“But, if necessary, we have further military assets that can be deployed … if the governors and the mayors need it and they can’t get control of the situation.
“We’ll do whatever the governors or mayors need to keep control of their cities.”
Civil unrest has swelled in recent days following Monday’s death of George Floyd, who was shown on video gasping for breath as a white Minneapolis policeman knelt on his neck.
The National Guard said in a statement that 5,000 of its soldiers and airmen had been activated in 15 states and Washington, DC, but that “state and local law enforcement agencies remain responsible for security.”
Another 2,000 National Guard troops were ready to activate if needed, the statement said.
More to come.