Many protesters at Seattle’s Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone (CHAZ) or Capitol Hill Organized Protest (CHOP) left the area on Thursday, according to a statement of the de-facto leader of the protest movement.
Footage shows a few tents left in the area, alongside ‘Black lives matter’ banners in memory of George Floyd, and barricades. Small groups could also be seen rallying in protest.
“CHOP (Capitol Hill Organised Protest) has forever been about uniting people, about rallying people from all different races, genders, religions, no matter who you are,” said an activist, as he explained the movement has lost its initial vibe after ‘random’ groups interfered with the protest causing divisions.
The protests in the neighbourhood started on June 8 in response to George Floyd’s death, with activists demanding police reform.
Following several incidents in the area, including some shootings, on Monday Seattle’s Mayor Jenny Durkan asked people to leave and announced that officials would clear the area. The Seattle Police Department will also move back into its currently blockaded East Precinct in the coming weeks, police say.