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WORLD | 06-09-2017 10:21

US cities erupt in protest as young migrant protection plan faces end

President Trump’s controversial decision to end Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) programme brings demonstrators onto streets.

Protests erupted in several major cities across the United States after the government announced plans to end a programme that allowed young immigrants brought to the country illegally as children to remain in the country.

Hundreds gathered in Washington outside the White House even before Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the end of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) programme.

Protesters chanted "My mother is somebody" and held up signs saying “Here to stay,” according to a Facebook video posted by United We Dream, an immigrant youth-led organisation. They later marched from the White House down a city street chanting and waving signs and banners.

“For many months [President Donald Trump] said, ‘I love the Dreamers.’ He lied to us,” Gustavo Torres, executive director an immigration advocacy organisation, told the Washington Post.

In New York City, 34 protesters were arrested during sit-ins near Trump Tower. Chief of Patrol Terence Monahan said about 300 protesters were on the street around Trump Tower marching when 12 sat down.

“They were issued warnings to get up and leave. They disobeyed those warnings and remained in street and they were arrested,” Monahan said during a press conference. Another group of 22 protesters also sitting down in the street in the same area were arrested about 45 minutes later, he said.

Hundreds of students gathered in Denver at Auraria Campus to show their support for the so-called dreamers. Students ranging from middle school age to university level came to the campus, some walking almost 10 kilometres to attend the protest, the Denver Post reported.

Several rallies were planned in the Los Angeles area for Tuesday. For one rally, protesters planned to meet in front of city hall to march towards the federal building, the Los Angeles Times reported.

More protests were scheduled to take place in several more major cities, including Boston, San Diego, San Francisco and Philadelphia.


- dpa


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