BBC – US President Donald Trump has visited Kenosha, Wisconsin to back law enforcement after the police shooting of a black man sparked civil strife.
The Republican president blamed “domestic terror” for the “destruction” in the Midwestern city.
Kenosha saw days of violence after police shot Jacob Blake in the back and left him paralysed on 23 August.
Opinion polls show Mr Trump is narrowing Democratic rival Joe Biden’s lead ahead of November’s election.
The president is pushing a strong “law and order” message. Mr Biden has accused Mr Trump of stoking racial division.
“Fires are burning and we have a president who fans the flames rather than fighting the flames,” the former US vice-president said ahead of Tuesday’s trip.
What did Trump say in Kenosha?
The president visited areas damaged in the protests, including a burnt-out furniture store destroyed in the upheaval.
“These are not acts of peaceful protest, but really domestic terror,” he told local business leaders at a round table meeting in a high school gym.
Mr Trump defended the actions of US police and accused the media of focusing only on “bad” incidents involving officers.
The president did show some empathy for those hurt in confrontations with police, saying he felt “terribly for anybody who goes through that”. But he said he did not believe there was systemic racism in law enforcement.
The president also claimed without evidence that the city would have been “burnt to the ground” by protesters were it not for the National Guard.
Although Mr Trump said he sent the National Guard into Kenosha, they were deployed by Wisconsin’s governor and supported by 200 federal law enforcement officials ordered in by the president.
He also said his administration would provide nearly $4m (£3m) to help Kenosha businesses that had been damaged in the riots and $1m for city law enforcement.
Demonstrators have accused outside agitators of violently hijacking their protests. Kenosha police said at the weekend that 105 out of 175 suspects arrested during the unrest came from outside the city.