Jul 26, 2020 16:10 UTC
  •  Police, protesters clash in Seattle amid public outcry over US feds

US police have clashed with protesters calling for an end to police brutality and racial injustice in Seattle, Washington, as President Donald Trump presses ahead with a contentious plan to deploy federal agents to major cities to quell nationwide unrest.

Police in riot gear used flashbang grenades, pepper spray and tear gas to disperse thousands of protesters in Seattle late on Saturday.

Protesters carried signs that read, "Feds go home," and "We are living in a police state," also shouting chants of "No justice, no peace."

Local media reports said the sounds of repeated small detonations were heard in some streets, and smoke rose from an area where demonstrators had set fire to trailers used by a construction site in the city.

The Seattle police said in a post on its Twitter page that the forces had “made 45 arrests” in connection with the unrest.

Protesters also marched in the Texan capital of Austin as well as Louisville in Kentucky, New York, Omaha, California's Oakland and Los Angeles, and Richmond in Virginia, where riot police fired chemical agents at a Black Lives Matter rally.

The protests came amid a wave of public anger over Trump's planned "surge" of federal forces in major US cities to suppress widespread protests sparked by the brutal murder of unarmed African American George Floyd in police custody in Minneapolis in late May.

Portland, the biggest city in the state of Oregon, has been hit particularly hard by violent protests over the past two months.

The excessive use of force by officers in Portland have angered local leaders and Democrats in Congress, who have been complaining about the Trump administration's approach.