Trump presidency: Protests turn violent in Portland, Oregon

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Themorningbellbd.com desk, November 11: A second night of protests in the US against President-elect Donald Trump has turned violent in Portland, Oregon.

Several thousand demonstrators gathered in the centre of the western city. Some smashed shop and car windows, threw firecrackers and set rubbish alight.

Police declared a riot and arrested 29 people. Protests in other US cities were smaller than on Wednesday.

After blaming unrest on “professional protesters”, Mr Trump tweeted to commend their “passion” for America.president-barack-obama-meets-president-elect-donald-trump-in-the-oval-office

“Love the fact that the small groups of protesters last night have passion for our great country,” he wrote. “We will all come together and be proud!”

In his earlier tweet, he had accused the media of inciting the protests.

The protesters, mainly young people, say a Trump presidency would create deep divisions along racial and gender lines.

Police in Portland accused some demonstrators of carrying bats and arming themselves with stones. Objects were thrown at the police, who responded with pepper spray and rubber baton rounds.

The state of Oregon voted 51-41% in favour of Democrat Hillary Clinton in Tuesday’s election.

Mr Trump met President Barack Obama at the White House on Thursday.

Senior Trump adviser and former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani called protesters on college campuses “a bunch of spoiled cry-babies” on Fox News.

Mr Giuliani, who has been mentioned as Mr Trump’s possible attorney general, was responding to the suggestion that students suffering anxiety over the election result were being offered therapy.

There were no reports of violence at the other protests:

Demonstrators in Minneapolis briefly blocked an interstate highway in both directions

In Philadelphia, crowds gathered near City Hall holding placards bearing slogans such as “Not Our President”, “Trans Against Trump” and “Make America Safe For All”

In Baltimore, police say a peaceful crowd of 600 people marched through the city, blocking trafficmelania-trump-and-michelle-obama-in-conversation

In San Francisco, high school students waved rainbow banners and Mexican flags

A small crowd also gathered outside Trump Tower in Chicago, a day after thousands had marched through the city centre.

Some passers-by cheered them but at least one driver shouted that they should “shut up and accept democracy”.

Protesters also returned to Trump Tower in New York for a second night.

Meanwhile Mexico’s president said he was optimistic his country could have a positive relationship with the US under Mr Trump, despite his anti-Mexican rhetoric during the campaign.

Enrique Pena Nieto said he and Trump had agreed to meet, possibly during the transition period before Mr Trump’s inauguration in January.

In Russia, President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman said Mr Trump and Mr Putin were “very much alike” in how they saw the world.

Dmitry Peskov said Russian experts had been in contact with some members of Mr Trump’s staff during the campaign.

But he said the Russian government had nothing to do with the theft of emails from the Democratic campaign that were later published by the transparency organisation Wikileaks.

‘Excellent’ conversation

Earlier Mr Trump said it was a “great honour” to meet President Obama for transition talks at the White House.

Mr Obama said his priority was to “facilitate a transition that ensures our president-elect is successful”.

Despite their cordiality, Mr Trump has vowed to dismantle much of President Obama’s legacy. That includes Obamacare, the act extending medical insurance to more Americans than ever before.

During the campaign, Mr Obama had called Mr Trump “uniquely unqualified” to be president.

The president-elect was accompanied by his wife, Melania, who had a meeting with First Lady Michelle Obama.

Mr Trump later tweeted that he had had “great chemistry” with Mr Obama, while his wife “liked Mrs O a lot”.

Source: BBC