President of the United States (US), Donald Trump, on Sunday said he had ordered the National Guard to begin withdrawing from Washington, D.C. now that “everything is under perfect control” after protests over the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody.
Trump tweets: “I have just given an order for our National Guard to start the process of withdrawing from Washington, D.C., now that everything is under perfect control. They will be going home, but can quickly return, if needed. Far fewer protesters showed up last night than anticipated!”
His Sunday morning announcement followed a tweet Saturday night thanking the National Guard, Secret Service and D.C. police for doing a “fantastic job” responding to the protests. He said there was a “much smaller crowd” in the district “than anticipated.”
The commander of the D.C. the National Guard told CNN on Saturday that thousands of troops called in from other states in response to the protests could begin leaving the nation’s capital as early as Monday.
D.C Mayor Muriel Bowser (D) sent a letter to Trump Friday requesting he withdraw all “extraordinary federal law enforcement and military presence,” noting that she had ended the state of emergency in the distinct related to the demonstrations.
In her letter, Bowser noted that the protests had been peaceful and the police did not make a “single arrest” during the previous two nights.
On May 25, 2020, Floyd, a 46-year-old black man, died in Minneapolis, Minnesota after white police officer Derek Chauvin knelt on his neck for almost nine minutes while Floyd was handcuffed and lying face down on the street.
Two other officers further restrained Floyd, and a fourth prevented onlookers from intervening.
Floyd, who was being arrested on suspicion of using a counterfeit bill, begged for his life, repeatedly telling officers “I can’t breathe”.
During the final three minutes, Floyd was motionless and had no pulse. The officers ignored onlookers’ pleas that they release Floyd, and Chauvin’s knee remained on Floyd’s neck as emergency medical technicians attempted to treat him.