Troops deployed in Minneapolis after Trump 'incited violence' on Twitter

29 May 2020, 16:09

The National Guard in Minneapolis
The National Guard in Minneapolis. Picture: Getty

By Maddie Goodfellow

Troops have been deployed to Minneapolis as protestors continue to clash with police following the death of George Floyd.

Donald Trump threatened to deploy the military to Minneapolis to "shoot" rioters as a third night of protests swept the city on Thursday.

On Friday, the president tweeted: "The National Guard has arrived on the scene. They are in Minneapolis and fully prepared. George Floyd will not have died in vain. Respect his memory!!!"

Photos show the National Guard on the streets of Minneapolis and St. Paul as protests continue after the death of George Floyd which has caused widespread destruction and fires.

Demonstrators have violently clashed with police after a white police officer was seen on video kneeling on the neck of a handcuffed black man who later died following an arrest.

Minnesota Governor Tim Walz called in the National Guard at the Minneapolis mayor's request.

The White House also called Twitter "biased and bad-faith" after the social media platform censored a tweet by Donald Trump.

A tweet from the official White House feed read: "The President did not glorify violence. He clearly condemned it. @Jackand Twitter's biased, bad-faith "fact-checkers" have made it clear: Twitter is a publisher, not a platform."

The tweet tagged the account of Twitter founder Dorsey.

In a thread of tweets on Thursday, President Trump said he could not "stand back and watch" what was happening to the "great American City, Minneapolis."

Trump said it was a "total lack of leadership," warning Mayor Jacob Frey to "get his act together and bring the City under control," or he threatened to "send in the National Guard & get the job done right....."The President branded protester "thugs" and accused them of "dishonouring the memory of George Floyd," the dead man.

Mr Trump said he had spoken to the state Governor Tim Walz and "told him that the Military is with him all the way."

He said if there were any "difficulty" then the National Guard would be federalised (meaning it would come under the control of the President.

He then issued his threat "when the looting starts, the shooting starts. Thank you!"

The tweet was posted just hours after demonstrators in the US city stormed and set fire to a police station which had become a focus for protests.

It was censored by Twitter with the social media site saying it had violated their policies around "glorifying violence."

Protesters torch Minneapolis police station after black man's death

Twitter said: "This Tweet violates our policies regarding the glorification of violence based on the historical context of the last line, its connection to violence, and the risk it could inspire similar actions today.

"We've taken action in the interest of preventing others from being inspired to commit violent acts, but have kept the Tweet on Twitter because it is important that the public still be able to see the Tweet given its relevance to ongoing matters of public importance.

"As is standard with this notice, engagements with the Tweet will be limited. People will be able to Retweet with Comment, but will not be able to Like, Reply or Retweet it."