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Police near the White House during George Floyd protests. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Immigration agents have been deployed to assist federal, state and local law enforcement amid intensifying protests over the police killing of George Floyd, immigration agency officials confirmed to Axios.

Why it matters: Local protests in cities across the U.S., a number of which have turned violent, have incited a strong federal response from agencies including the National Guard, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Customs and Border Protection (CBP) — and President Trump himself.

  • Over the past few days, ICE and CBP agents have been deployed to help the Federal Protective Service guard buildings and facilities where protests have erupted.
  • While ICE does not carry out immigration enforcement at protests, both ICE and CBP officers have the authority to conduct criminal arrests, ICE and CBP officials told Axios.
  • Several local jurisdictions and states have requested the agencies' assistance in the face of protests, including D.C. and Minneapolis, ICE officials said. It is not uncommon for ICE to assist local law enforcement during certain emergencies.
A tweet previously embedded here has been deleted or was tweeted from an account that has been suspended or deleted.

Neither ICE nor CBP was able to provide details on the number of agents or other resources they have deployed.

  • "It would not be appropriate to disclose law enforcement operational specifics which could jeopardize operational security," CBP spokesperson Stephanie Malin said in a statement.
  • ICE "fully respects the rights of all people to peacefully express their opinions," ICE spokesperson Danielle Bennet sent in an e-mail.

Go deeper

Mark Meadows: "Most of Donald Trump's America is peaceful"

White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows argued Sunday on NBC's "Meet the Press" that "most of Donald Trump's America is peaceful" and that the violence that the Trump campaign has so frequently highlighted as part of its "law and order" message is in "Democrat cities."

Why it matters: One of the main themes of last week's Republican convention was that scenes of violent protests and crime are what America will look like under a Joe Biden administration. Biden shot back on Thursday, saying: "The violence we’re witnessing is happening under Donald Trump. Not me. It’s getting worse, and we know why."

Defense taking steps to mitigate civilian harm after botched airstrikes

Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin speaks during a news conference at the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia on Sept. 1, 2021. Photo: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin issued a directive Thursday to improve the U.S. military's approach to civilian harm mitigation and response, calling it a "strategic and a moral imperative."

Why it matters: The Pentagon has faced criticism for years for amassing civilian casualties in its missions, especially in the Middle East. New York Times investigations have found systemic failures in efforts to prevent civilian deaths, as well as a cover-up of a 2019 airstrike that killed dozens of women and children in Syria.

2 hours ago - World

Mapped: The world's most and least corrupt countries

Expand chart
Data: Transparency International; Map: Jared Whalen/Axios

The most corrupt governments in the world are in South Sudan, Syria and Somalia, according to Transparency International's annual index, while the "cleanest" are in Denmark, Finland and New Zealand.

  • Breaking it down: The U.S. is 27th, China 66th, India 85th, Brazil 96th and Russia 136th. Scroll over the map to see each country's ranking.