A crowd of protesters tried to topple the statue of a former US president near the White House on Monday evening as police responded with pepper spray to break up new demonstrations that erupted in Washington, DC.
A wave of nationwide rallies calling for racial justice has swept the United States since the May 25 police killing of George Floyd, a 46-year-old Black man, in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
On Monday, hundreds of protesters were pushed back by at least 100 security force personnel after they had thrown ropes around the statue of Andrew Jackson, the divisive seventh US president, in Lafayette Square.
Jackson, in office from 1829 to 1837, owned more than 500 slaves over his lifetime and was a key figure in the Trail of Tears, the forced relocation of nearly 100,000 Native Americans.
The clash over Jackson’s statue is part of the latest movement in the protests: tearing down statues and monuments to individuals linked to the US’ racist past.