Over 500 women who were staging a sit-in against Donald Trump's hard-line "zero tolerance" immigration policy were arrested in US congress buildings. Those charged included the Oscar-winning actor and a congress member.
US Capitol Police said that 575 people who had been conducting a sit-down protest in the atrium of a Senate office building in Washington, DC, on Thursday had been arrested, charged with unlawfully demonstrating, and then released.
The protesters' demonstration was aimed at Trump's "zero-tolerance" border policy, which calls for anyone caught crossing the border to be arrested. The policy led to the separation of over 2,000 children from their migrant parents since the administration introduced the new stance in early May.
Actor Susan Sarandon was among them, tweeting throughout the rally. "Arrested. Stay strong. Keep fighting," the Hollywood star wrote as the arrests took place.
Pramila Jayapal, a democratic member of the House of Representatives from the state of Washington, was also among those arrested.
"The women arrested today understand that this is far beyond politics, this is about right and wrong," she tweeted.
Many of the women were wearing silver blankets resembling those provided to children in detention centers.
The women sang and chanted various slogans, including "We care," a reference to the controversial jacket first lady Melania Trump wore when she went to visit a migrant center for children on June 22.
Following international outcry, Trump recently backed off from separating migrant children from their parents, though the White House continues to insist that the "zero-tolerance" policy remains in place. The Trump administration has yet to reunite thousands of separated children with their parents. Congress has not yet been able to pass any of the immigration reform bills that have been put forward by Republicans.
More than 600 rallies are planned Saturday to oppose the separation of children from their parents at the US-Mexico border.
eg/cmb (AFP, Reuters)