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Anti-Trump Protests in Portland Turn into ‘Riots’ as Peaceful Protests Across the Nation Continue

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Alex Milan Tracy/Sipa USA/AP

Anti-Donald Trump protests across the country continued Thursday night, with police saying that an otherwise peaceful demonstration in Portland, Oregon, had turned into a “riot.”

“Police have arrested at least 29 people during riot,” Portland police wrote in a tweet early Friday. “Late Friday morning we’ll have a complete update on arrests, charges and photos.”

The department soon followed up to the tweet, adding, “Correction: 26 arrests.”

The Portland march, with more than 4,000 protesters, began peacefully, but turned violent when a small group of protesters threw projectiles at police, damaged cars and vandalized local businesses, Portland Police Sgt. Pete Simpson said, according to CNN.

Alex Milan Tracy/Sipa USA/AP
Alex Milan Tracy/Sipa USA/AP

In a series of tweets, Portland police admitted to using “less lethal munitions” to subdue the protesters, calling the demonstration “an unlawful protest.

A number of protests broke out in cities across the country after Trump was elected president on Tuesday, defeating Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.

From New York to California, protesters in many cities have taken to the streets to oppose the election of the 70-year-old who has made several controversial remarks during his campaign, including calling Mexican immigrants “rapists,”  warring with a Muslim-American Gold Star family, hurling race-based attacks on U.S. District Judge Gonzalo Curiel, mocking a reporter who has a disability, saying women who decide to have abortions should be punished, and making lewd comments in an unearthed 2005 video about groping and trying to have sex with women.

The protests began Wednesday, the day after election night, and while a majority of the demonstrations have been peaceful, a few have had pockets of violence, leading to scattered arrests in California and Chicago, NBC News reports.

Hundreds gathered for a peaceful march in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Officials told WBAL that the two protests in Baltimore were largely peaceful, although two people were detained but not charged.

Jim Vondruska/NurPhoto via Getty Images
Jim Vondruska/NurPhoto via Getty Images

“People are furious, not just at the results of the election, but the rhetoric of Donald Trump,” Ahmed Kanna, an organizer for Social Alternative Berkeley, told CNN.

Another protester told CNN: “As a nation we thought we had come so far, but it seems like we;re taking many steps back. We want to come together to change that.”

Trump both praised and condemned the protests in a pair of tweets, writing in one, “Just had a very open and successful presidential election. Now professional protesters, incited by the media, are protesting. Very unfair!”

MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images
MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images

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

White House press secretary Josh Earnest supported the right to protest in a statement on Thursday: “The President believes that that is a right that should be protected. It is a right that should be exercised without violence.  And there are people who are disappointed in the outcome.”

Meanwhile, there have also been reports of increased harassment of minorities in the wake of Trump’s election.

“Trump!” was reportedly seen written on a Muslim prayer room door in New York on Wednesday, racist graffiti including the N-word, “whites only” and “#GoBacktoAfrica” allegedly appeared in the bathroom of a Minnesota high school, middle school students in Michigan are heard in a video yelling “Build the wall!” and in North Carolina “Black lives don’t matter and neither does your votes” was painted on a wall, CNN reports.