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US protesters turn White House fences into memorial wall

Signs line the fence that was put up on the perimeter of Lafayette Park as demonstrators protest Sunday, June 7, 2020, the White House in Washington, over the death of George Floyd, a black man who was in police custody in Minneapolis. Floyd died after being restrained by Minneapolis police officers. (Photo by AP)

American protesters have converted the fence outside the White House into a memorial wall to commemorate the black victims of police violence.

The fence, which has been erected around Lafayette Square to push protesters away from the White House, now looks more like an art gallery, according to Sunday photos and videos of Washington DC.

The photos and videos show a number of protest signs mounted on the fence by demonstrators bearing messages that include “Black Lives Matter,” “No justice, no peace,” “Say their names” and other rallying cries of those who have marched through the nation’s capital over the 10 days.

As in dozens of other cities in the US and abroad, the American capital has seen daily protests for more than a week following the death of George Floyd.

During the protests in Washington, Lafayette Square served as a flashpoint. On Monday, the protestors gathered there were forcibly cleared from the area by US Park Police and law enforcement, who used chemical agents in the process, so President Donald Trump could walk from the White House to St. John’s Episcopal Church after a televised speech.

The next day, a tall black fence was erected around on the north edge of Lafayette Square, and by Thursday, all entrances to Lafayette Park, the Ellipse and other open spaces near the White House had been closed, according to DCist.

Since then, the fence has been a meeting point for demonstrators, with the largest crowds yet descending on the area near the White House on Saturday, and the space has become symbolic of the larger protests.

Floyd, a 46-year-old black man, died May 25 when a Minneapolis police officer kneeled on his neck for nearly nine minutes during an arrest.

The officer, Derek Chauvin, was fired and later arrested and charged with second-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter, while three other officers on the scene were fired and later charged with aiding and abetting.

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