The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) warned about the occurrence of possible armed clashes in Portland during the election day of this November 3, Radio Rebelde publishes.

That city in the state of Oregon, a bastion of the Democrats and a center of divisions, has been the scene of protests against racism and police brutality, following the death of African-American George Floyd at the hands of a policeman in the city of Minneapolis, Minnesota.

These demonstrations have run into federal troops who for weeks dispersed them with tear gas and rubber bullets. There were also clashes with far-right militias such as the Proud Boys.

As never before, now in the midst of a polarized electoral environment alarms are being raised for possible violence. Portland FBI agent Renn Cannon tells AFP news agency that “What is most worrying is the possibility of armed clashes between opposing groups”, which “could escalate into a dangerous situation. If tempers heat up, we could end up with a tragic and unfortunate act of violence”.

The FBI is “very vigilant” in the face of any threat that could “reduce the ability of people to exercise their first amendment rights to free speech or to exercise the right to vote”, Cannon added.

For her part, Oregon Governor Kate Brown last night issued an executive order for state forces to take over the Portland police, overturning a municipal order prohibiting the use of tear gas.

In addition, she put the National Guard on alert. “This is an election like no other in our lives”, Brown said, while warning about the presence of white supremacists.

Portland has become a center of protests where creeds and ideologies converge, with Republican militants from nearby rural areas clashing with activists from a historically Democratic city.

Some voters share the fears of the authorities, such as Leigh Smith, a humble 35-year-old cook who voted on Monday near the federal court, the epicenter of the first protests. “It is a situation that can be calm, or very chaotic”, she said.

The FBI also confirmed that it is investigating an incident that occurred Friday in Texas when supporters of US President Donald Trump ambushed a campaign bus of his Democratic rival, Joe Biden, that took place on a highway in Texas County of Hays.

On the other hand, senior officials of immigration agencies that are part of the United States Department of Homeland Security report that they are preparing for possible disturbances.

During the last hours it was decided to build a wall or fence “not scalable” around the White House in Washington DC as a preventive measure. According to a report by the British newspaper The Guardian, the barricade was originally used during the month of June as part of the protests over Floyd’s death.

In addition to the physical barrier, around 250 elements of the National Guard have mobilized around the official residence in response to possible demonstrations.

Shops, offices and businesses in that city have begun to upholster their facades in order to avoid damage. Similar steps have been taken in New York, Los Angeles, Seattle, and Philadelphia.

Por Redacción digital

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