Portland, Oregon Mayor Ted Wheeler Wednesday has a warning for people planning violent protests in his city this weekend: “We will be ready for you.”
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“Our message is a simple one,” Wheeler told Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom.” “We are unified as a city; we are opposed to violence. If you bring your violence here, we will have the people, we will have the personnel, we will have the resources to enforce the law, and we will be ready for you.”
In June, violence broke out during anti-ICE demonstrations, with conservative journalist Andy Ngo being assaulted by Antifa protesters.
Both extreme right-wing groups and Antifa are planning protests in the Oregon city on Saturday, and in preparation, and Wheeler said the protesters will see a much larger police presence.
“We’ve worked with our local district attorney so if there is a protest, we can process that,” said Wheeler. “What is different this time is our city has never been more unified. We have government leaders, business leaders, faith leaders, labor leaders, school leaders all coming together with a clear message. If you are coming to our city to commit acts of violence you are not welcome here.”
Wheeler said police agencies have “learned a lot” from the violent protests in Charlottesville, Virginia in 2017, and the key is to keep the factions separated while giving people space to exercise their rights to assembly and free speech. However there will be no tolerance for violence, he promised.