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Seattle Protesters Storm City Hall After Running Cops Out Of Precinct, Establishing “Autonomous Zone”

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Originally appeared at ZeroHedge

Update (1140ET): Protesters broke into Seattle City Hall Tuesday night to demand the resignation of Mayor Jenny Durkan.

The protesters were aided by Seattle Councilwoman Kshama Sawant, who was seen alongside the protesters inside City Hall, according to Fox News.

After protesting inside for over an hour, the group left City Hall, chanting “Defund SPD” as they left.

*  *  *

What began as an attempt by Seattle Police to ease tensions after a week of protests by retreating from the Capitol Hill neighborhood has resulted in the establishment of the so-calledCapitol Hill Autonomous Zone” – a six-block section of town which Antifa and other activists have occupied, setting up barricades and claiming the area near the Seattle PD East Precinct as theirs.

Seattle Protesters Storm City Hall After Running Cops Out Of Precinct, Establishing "Autonomous Zone"

Click to see the full-size image

According to Capitol Hill Seattle Blog, the pullback by the police and National Guard come after police used flash bangs, pepper spray and clouds of gas just after midnight – a standoff which followed a warning from Mayor Jenny Durkan that the city had “specific information from the FBI about threats to the East Precincts and buildings in Seattle.”

On Monday night, seven hours after Police Chief Carmen Best announced held an impromptu press conference, Durkan tweeted that law enforcement would retreat in “an effort to proactively de-escalate interactions between protesters and law enforcement outside the East Precinct.”

Before the pullout, Seattle Fire removed “many personal effects of the officers normally stationed in the East Precinct” as part of a “proactive effort to guard against potential damage or fire,” according to CHS, while a mobile shredding unit was seen at the precinct – ostensibly destroying sensitive files ahead of the pullout.

The Seattle Department of Neighborhoods, meanwhile, sent an ominous sounding message to area businesses and organizations that warns of a “credible threat” to burn the precinct building down, notifying them that the building and nearby apartment buildings were to be assessed for possible treatment with “a biodegradable foam fire suppressant” by the Seattle Fire Department as a preventative measure. –CHS

Local rep. Kshama Sawant – a longtime critic of Durkan, said on Monday to a crowd of protesters: “What we are seeing now is an uprising. A rebellion of young people. Not just nationwide but globally.”

Seattle Protesters Storm City Hall After Running Cops Out Of Precinct, Establishing "Autonomous Zone"

By Tuesday morning, protesters repurposed police barricades into a zig-zag maze to block traffic, while tent shelters were set up to help keep volunteers dry.

Seattle Protesters Storm City Hall After Running Cops Out Of Precinct, Establishing "Autonomous Zone"

Photos via CHS

Seattle Protesters Storm City Hall After Running Cops Out Of Precinct, Establishing "Autonomous Zone"

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