Protesters, lawmaker arrested in U.S. Senate building over immigration

Protesters, lawmaker arrested in U.S. Senate building over immigration

Protesters, lawmaker arrested in U.S. Senate building over immigration

Capitol Police arrested almost 600 Women's March protesters who filled the atrium of the Hart Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill today in opposition to the Trump administration's "zero-tolerance" border enforcement policies.

The United States Capitol Police confirmed that 575 people -mostly women- were arrested on the premises, including Democratic Rep. Pramila Jayapal.

A coalition of left-leaning activists, including groups that organized the massive women's marches the past two years, is helping to coordinate more than 600 demonstrations across the country. Kamala Harris, spoke.Protesters chanted slogans on their way to the Capitol, including, "No hate, no fear".

Ms Jayapal has emerged as one of the key rallying points for protests against Trump.

With the zero tolerance policy now in tatters, the women are turning to an even bigger target, demanding the abolition of ICE and for the release of all illegal immigrants from detention.

The protest took place in the atrium of the Hart Senate Office Building.

- Eight protesters were arrested outside an ICE building in Portland, Oregon, that has been closed because of a round-the-clock demonstration.

Several speakers, including Lin-Manuel Miranda, the creator of "Hamilton", and actors America Ferrera and Diane Guerrero, will take the stage at Lafayette Square to kick off the protest, which begins at 11 a.m. People who have lived through the Holocaust, Japanese internment camps and Trump's family separation policy are expected to speak.

After an outcry over the separation of parents and children at the border, Trump last week signed an executive order to allow children to stay with parents caught crossing the border illegally. They also called for the termination of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, a drastic demand that would have been unthinkable several months earlier.

Capitol Police warned protesters that if they did not leave the building they would be arrested. As they passed by the Trump International Hotel, the protesters yelled "Shame" and "Where are the children?". Celebrities including Susan Sarandon were among the group of protestors.

"Women across the country are horrified as we see our government violating the rights of women, separating families, and traumatizing children", Women's March co-chair Linda Sarsour said in a statement.

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