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Washington state activates National Guard ahead of protests


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Washington state activates National Guard ahead of protests 1

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee has called in the National Guard to protect residents, government employees and buildings when demonstrators protest at the state’s Capitol starting Sunday.

Inslee announced Friday he’s authorized 750 members of the Washington State National Guard and Washington State Patrol troopers, along with local law enforcement, to be in Olympia for any disruptions.

Conservative and anti-fascist groups are among those expected to attend the protests on Sunday and Monday, The Seattle Times reported.

“In light of the most recent insurrection activity, the state cannot tolerate any actions that could result in harm, mayhem or interruption of the function of democratic institutions,” Inslee said in a statement. “

“Any illegal intrusion of the Capitol, state buildings or restricted areas will not be tolerated and [will be] strictly enforced.”

The move comes after thousands of pro-Trump rioters stormed Capitol Hill to disrupt Congress’ certification of President-elect Joe Biden’s election victory on Wednesday.

Five people died, including a Capitol police officer, three protesters who suffered medical emergencies, and an Air Force veteran who was among the rioters.

Congress later resumed its session and certified Biden’s 306-232 Electoral College win early Thursday.

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