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Seattle will move to dismantle 'Chaz' occupied protest zone, mayor says

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Seattle will move to dismantle 'Chaz' occupied protest zone, mayor says

Seattle officials announced on Monday that they would begin to dismantle the six blocks of occupied streets known as the Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone, or “Chaz”, following two shootings at the site in 48 hours.

“It’s time for people to go home. It is time for us to restore Cal Anderson and Capitol Hill so it can be a vibrant part of the community,” said the Seattle mayor, Jenny Durkan, during a press conference. “We can still accommodate people who want to protest peacefully, come there and gather. But the impacts on the businesses and residents and community are now too much.”

Durkan said Seattle police would be returning to the east precinct, the site they abandoned after a series of dangerous clashes between protesters and law enforcement.

She said they’ll do so “peacefully” and “in the near future” but did not offer an exact timeline.

Early on Tuesday morning, police reported another shooting, this one near the protest area. A man in his 30s was shot in the calf and transported by medics to a nearby hospital, but officers said in a police blog that he did not provide information on what happened. There were also reports of gunshots inside Chaz, but officials have not reported any other victims.

The decision comes about two weeks after a section of the Seattle neighborhood of Capitol Hill was occupied by protesters as a self-proclaimed police-free zone. The area is also known as the Capitol Hill Organized Protest (Chop).

Hundreds of protesters have faithfully gathered there each day and night, filling the area with free food and community gardens, and holding speeches and teach-ins.

Although it had been largely peaceful, that changed over the weekend, when two separate shootings took place. A 19-year-old man was killed and two others were injured, one critically.

Officers responding to the shooting on Saturday have said they “were met by a violent crowd that prevented officers’ safe access to the victims”, according to a police blog. In officers’ body-camera footage, police can be heard telling people at the protest zone to move out of the way so they can get to the victim, while protesters repeatedly tell them the victim is already gone.


They let the democrats destroy the area, then decide it has to be cleaned up and returned to normal. Good luck getting any sane people to do that.


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