Omar accused of securing ‘special treatment’ curfew exemption for Muslims observing Ramadan

U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar managed to obtain an exemption for Muslims in her Minneapolis district observing the holy month of Ramadan while the rest of the city is under a curfew due to riots following another police-involved shooting of a black man.

“My office reached out to the Minneapolis Mayor and Governor’s offices to urge them to include an exemption to the curfew this evening for travel to and from Ramadan activities/prayer services,” Omar wrote on Twitter Monday, the first day of the observance.

“The Governor’s Executive Order was just announced with that exemption so that folks are able to observe the first night of Taraweeh this evening without fear of arrest,” she added.

Police in Minneapolis issued the curfew after new rounds of rioting and looting began in the wake of the police shooting death of Daunte Wright, 20, by veteran officer Kimberly Potter of the Brooklyn Center Police Department on Sunday.

 

Officers stopped Wright for expired tags on his vehicle and discovered he had a warrant out for his arrest over failure to appear in court on a gun-related charge. Video of the encounter shows one officer preparing to handcuff Wright when he breaks free and gets back into his vehicle. As he struggles with the officer, Potter approaches the open door and can be heard yelling, “Taser! Taser!” But she appeared to have mistaken her service weapon for her Taser, which she didn’t realize until after she fired a shot into Wright, who sped away and died a short time later.

Some online users complained that the curfew should not be selective.

“No. Curfew for all. No special treatment for anyone,” one user wrote.

“Screw that! Rules don’t apply to thee???” another user noted.

Despite the curfew, hundreds of people rallied outside the Brooklyn Center PD headquarters to protest Wright’s death, many sporting Black Lives Matter banners and clashing with officers.

As the violence escalated, police arrested some 40 people in the hours following the incident, with officers in riot gear deploying tear gas and flash-bang grenades to disperse the crowds.

Protesters responded by throwing tear gas and smoke canisters back at police as well as “bottles, fireworks, bricks and other projectiles,” according to a tweet from Operation Safety Net.

Independent journalist Andy Ngo reported that police began installing concrete barriers around the Brooklyn Center HQ following Sunday’s rioting and violence.

“I am closely monitoring the situation in Brooklyn Center. Gwen and I are praying for Daunte Wright’s family as our state mourns another life of a Black man taken by law enforcement,” Gov. Tim Walz, a Democrat, tweeted, which led to criticism from Minnesota Republicans.

Governor, your words fuel fire for protesters. You of all people should know to wait until the @MnDPS_BCA finish their investigation. In your tweet, you should have stopped after the words, ‘praying for Duante Wright’s family’. Everything after that was inappropriate,” the Saint Paul GOP tweeted in response.

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Jon Dougherty

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