UPDATE: Minnesota National Guard Fully Activated
Jennifer Lewerenz | May 30, 2020 AT 3:30 pm
UPDATE 3:30 p.m.
(KNSI) - The Minnesota National Guard says they have been fully activated to support law enforcement in the Twin Cities.
Agencies are bracing for another night of riots and violence in Minneapolis in response to the police killing of George Floyd Monday night.
The Minnesota National Guard is an organization of more than 13,000 Soldiers and Airmen. A full activation authorizes the guard to activate all those that are medically fit, and not deployed to support the mission to quell civil unrest. Initial estimates are that could include between 7000-10,000 Soldiers and Airmen. That will include nearly 2,500 by tonight to support the Saturday evening missions. The remainder will muster and become available during coming days "We are 'All-In,'" stated Major General Jon Jensen, Minnesota Adjutant General, "we are 'All-In' for the people of Minnesota."
In a press release, it states, "The Minnesota National Guard continues to maintain a presence in the Twin Cities in support of local civil authorities. Our citizen-soldiers and airmen prepared to support missions throughout the Minneapolis, Saint Paul and its surrounding communities.
The Minnesota National Guard is prepared to protect life, protect property, and restore order. This includes patrols, manning control points, and assisting firefighters in accomplishing their life-saving mission by providing security."
This represents the most extensive domestic deployment in Minnesota National Guard's 164-year history and the largest in the state since World War II.
A curfew is in effect again at 8:00 p.m. for towns across the Twin Cities. A curfew went into effect in many cities at 8:00 Friday night. That curfew went largely ignored in Minneapolis as rioters destroyed and looted businesses throughout both the north and south sides of the city.
ORIGINAL STORY Posted 1:55 p.m. May 30, 2020
(KNSI) - The Minnesota National Guard says they have activated one thousand additional soldiers to address the growing violence and destruction in Minneapolis.
Riots erupted this week after a video, shot by a woman in Minneapolis spread showing a Minneapolis Police officer kneeling on the neck of a man named George Floyd as Floyd could be heard on the video repeatedly saying "I can't breathe."
Announced during an early morning press conference by Minnesota's Adjutant General, Maj. Gen. Jon Jensen, "Governor Walz authorized the National Guard to increase our strength by one-thousand soldiers to support civil authorities."
Last night, an additional 200 soldiers were activated, bringing the total to more than 700 soldiers and airmen on state active duty just before midnight.
Riots got out of hand Friday night, even though a mandatory curfew went into place at 8:00 p.m. Reports on the ground showed there was little to no police presence anywhere near where the worst of the violence was occurring.
In an early morning press conference Saturday, Maj. Gen Jensen said that soldiers were reallocated to hold strategic positions such as the State Capitol, the Federal Reserve Bank in Minneapolis, and Nicollet Mall.
As fires and looting continued, over 300 troops and members of the Minnesota State Patrol rolled into the worst of the riots in full tactical gear with military vehicles with a volley of tear gas to disperse the crowd.
There will be upwards of ten thousand soldiers prepared and ready to be deployed across the state tonight. This is the largest domestic deployment of law enforcement in the state's history. According to Reuters, there are 8,600 U.S. troops in Afghanistan as of this week, meaning there could be more troops deployed here as neighborhoods brace for another night of fires and looting.