Protests surge in US cities after arrests of hundreds of immigrants
Thousands of Americans have taken to the streets to protest President Donald Trump’s immigration policy and the arrests of hundreds of undocumented immigrants in several states this week.
About 2,000 demonstrators marched from outside the Federal Courts building in downtown Minneapolis to the University of Minnesota on Saturday afternoon to express solidarity with immigrants and Muslims.
The protesters denounced Trump’s now-frozen travel ban and his general view on immigration as state-sponsored hatred.
“It may take years or even decades, but the people always win,” one organizer told the crowd. “We are what makes America great.”
Many children also joined the “Walk of Love,” carrying homemade heart-shaped signs and red balloons.
Parents said they wanted their children to learn the importance of activism so they could defend their peers who might be targeted because of their ethnicity.
Elsewhere, hundreds of protesters spilled onto streets of New York City, blocking traffic and sidewalks to express their outrage at the nationwide immigration raids.
The demonstrators held signs that read “No Human is Illegal”, “No Ban. No registry” and “ICE Free New York City.”
Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents raided many homes and workplaces in New York, Chicago, Atlanta, the Los Angeles area, North Carolina and South Carolina this week and arrested hundreds of immigrants.
The operation was the first of its kind since Trump took office on January 20.
In Washington, protesters gathered outside the White House on Saturday night to voice their concern about the criminalization of immigrants.
“I’m an editor of a magazine, but also it feels like every aspect of my life is sort of affected by the new administration,” David Bonanno, a protester, told local media.
In the first week of his presidency, Trump signed an executive order banning citizens of seven Muslim countries from entering the United States.
A Seattle federal judge blocked the order last month.
The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in San Francisco, California, ruled on Thursday that the restraining order against Trump’s travel ban should stay in place while the judge further considers its legality.
Trump told reporters on Friday that he was considering signing a “brand new order” on immigration.