Minnesota Fully Mobilizing to End Violence in Twin Cities
ST. PAUL -- In a news conference Saturday morning, Governor Tim Walz and law enforcement leaders discussed the next steps being taken in Minneapolis and St. Paul following another night of rioting and burning.
After previously activating 1,700 Minnesota National Guard members, Walz is fully mobilizing the guard for the first time since World War II and tapping into all state resources including those of the Department of Public Safety and Minnesota State Patrol.
Governor Walz says he has been in discussion with the governors of neighboring states and the federal Department of Defense regarding getting their support as well.
The governor says what started as protesting and grieving over the death of George Floyd on Monday has been taken over by domestic terrorists, ideological extremists, and international destabilizers.
Let's be very clear. The situation in Minneapolis is no longer in any way about the murder of George Floyd. It is about attacking civil society, instilling fear, and disrupting our great cities. With that being the case, as we indicated last night, our tactics again are to try to reduce loss of life and to do what we can to restore order.
St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter says all the people arrested in the city Friday night for violating curfew were from out of state.
What we are seeing right now is a group of people who are not from here. As I talked to my friends who have been in this movement for a very long time, who wake up in this movement every day and I ask them what they're seeing, what they're feeling, what they're hearing. I hear them say we don't know these folks. We don't know these folks who are agitating. We don't know these folks who are inciting violence. We don't know these folks who were first in to break a window.
According to DPS Commissioner John Harrington, the number of out-of-state rioters is estimated to be in the tens of thousands.
Peaceful protests Saturday in the Twin Cities will continue as originally scheduled and Walz says Minnesota’s resources will be working to protect the right of those people to assemble.
The metro will be under curfew again from 8:00 p.m. Saturday until 6:00 a.m. Sunday as the dangerous situation is expected to continue.