Portland protesters wish mayor birthday with fire & violence
PIC: AFP

Black Lives Matter protesters in Portland, Oregon, shifted their focus to the city's mayor, and police declared a riot as people broke windows, vandalised a business and set a small fire inside the upscale apartment building where Mayor Ted Wheeler lives.

The demonstration that began late Monday and extended into Tuesday fell on Wheeler's 58th birthday and featured shiny golden alphabet balloons that protesters used to spell out an expletive.

They sang on the street outside the mayor's building, some wearing party hats, and the fire was set with a bundle of newspapers in a store housed on the ground floor of Wheeler's building. There were no reports of major damage or injuries.

Wheeler, who is also police commissioner, has come under fire for his failure to bring the violence in Oregon's largest city under control and for heading up a police force that has used tear gas multiple times against demonstrators.

Some also blame the mayor for engaging in a war of words with President Donald Trump instead of focusing on local needs. Trump has put Portland and other Democrat-led cities in the crosshairs of a "law and order" re-election campaign theme - a move that's escalated tensions in the city.

(To download our E-paper please click here. The publishers permit sharing of the paper's PDF on WhatsApp and other social media platforms.)

Free Press Journal

www.freepressjournal.in