National Guardsmen deployed to Washington D.C. have been ordered not to use firearms or ammunition by Defense Secretary Mark Esper – who also ordered home active-duty troops that the Trump administration requested in recent days, according to The Washington Post.

Esper made the decision to disarm without first consulting the White House, which was not involved in the decision to disarm the Guard, according to two senior officials who spoke on condition of anonymity.

The move comes as activists gear up for a massive demonstration in the nation’s capitol on Saturday in the ongoing protests over the death of George Floyd – a black man who died after a white police officer in Minneapolis knelt on his neck for over eight minutes. An estimated 100,000 – 200,000 protesters are expected on Washington on Saturday.

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