12:36 GMT17 April 2021
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    US protesters outside Washington DC's Lafayette Square Park were pepper-sprayed by police on Monday after attempting to pull down an Andrew Jackson statue.

    Police have removed the ropes around the Jackson statue placed by protesters and have arrested two people involved in the protests, according to the Washington Times.

    Many protesters had to seek medical assistance for coughing and burning eyes.

    The statue depicts the general who commanded US forces during the Battle of New Orleans in 1815. Jackson was also US president between 1829 and 1837.

    The general was also a slaveowner and commanded US forces against the Seminole Nation, a Native American tribe based in Florida. He was also behind the deportation of five Native American tribes in the Trail of Tears, the forced relocations of about 60,000 Native Americans in the US from their homes in the southeastern US to areas west of the Mississippi River.
    Protestors treat a woman affected by pepper spray as Washington Metropolitan Police officers clash with demonstrators trying to pull down the statue of U.S. President Andrew Jackson in the middle of Lafayette Park in front of the White House during racial inequality protests in Washington, D.C., U.S., June 22, 2020.

    Protesters on Monday also set up a "Black House Autonomous Zone" using makeshift barricades just blocks away from the White House. One piece of plywood carried by a protester in the Zone read "people's fence."

    ​​On Friday, DC protesters toppled down the statue of Confederate general Albert Pike after wrapping it in chains. The statue was then set on fire as protesters encircled it and chanted: "No justice, no peace, no racist police." 

    Trump called the protesters a "disgrace" and called on them to be arrested.

    ​Nationwide protests across the US have been taking place since late May following the killing of George Floyd by police officers in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

    Multiple attacks by US police against peaceful demonstrators have occurred in the aftermath of Floyd’s killing. Police have driven vans into throngs of protesters, pepper-sprayed them and also arrested thousands.

    Hundreds of lawful protesters congregated in Lafayette Park in front of the White House on June 1 were violently dispersed by police using chemical irritants, rubber bullets and sound cannons so that US President Donald Trump could walk to the St. John’s Episcopal Church across the street from the White House to take pictures in front of the historic building with a Bible.


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