‘If kids don’t eat in peace, you don’t eat in peace!’ Protesters drive DHS secretary Kirstjen Nielsen out of a MEXICAN restaurant near the White House after Trump says she did a ‘fabulous’ job at press conference
- Nielsen was dining with a colleague at MXDC Cocina Mexicana by Todd English
- Protesters descended on the restaurant, yelling ‘Shame!’ and ‘Abolish ICE!’
- They lambasted her for eating Mexican food while thousands of children are separated from their parents at the US-Mexico border due to Trump’s policy
- Nielsen ignored the demonstrators and looked down at her phone during protest
Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen was run out of a Mexican restaurant in Washington DC by protesters on Tuesday night.
The protesters descended on MXDC Cocina Mexicana by Todd English, where Nielsen was dining with a male colleague just hours after Donald Trump praised her for doing a ‘fabulous job’ at Sunday’s press conference.
‘Secretary Nielsen how dare you spend your evening here eating dinner,’ one protester begins to yell in the video.
‘You’re complicit in the separation and deportation of over 10,000 children separated from their parents.’
‘If kids don’t eat in peace, you don’t eat in peace! Not in DC, not in the US!’ they chant at one point.
Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen was run out of a Mexican restaurant (left) in Washington DC by protesters on Tuesday night. She was then captured on video leaving the restaurant (right)
A large crowd of protesters boo as one man asks: ‘How can you eat a Mexican dinner as you’ve deported tens of thousands of people seeking asylum in the United States.’
‘We call on you to end family separation and abolish ICE.’
The protesters, who are part of the Democratic Socialists of America’s DC Chapter, then begin to shout ‘Abolish ICE! Abolish ICE!’ before yelling ‘Shame! Shame! Shame!’
Nielsen stares at her phone throughout the protest, refusing to acknowledge the chants.
The protesters continue to chant, yelling ‘End family separation!’
The protesters descended on the restaurant MXDC Cocina Mexicana by Todd English, where Nielsen was dining with a male companion during a work dinner
The group of protesters can be seen here as Nielsen (in the very back) looks down at her phone
The protesters, which are part of the Democratic Socialists of America’s DC Chapter, shouted ‘Abolish ICE! Abolish ICE!’ and ‘Shame! Shame!’ while Nielsen looked at her phone
Then one woman exclaims: ‘In a Mexican restaurant, of all places? Shame on you!’
Another woman screams ‘fascist pig!’ as the crowd continues to chant, clapping their hands.
‘No human being is illegal!’ they start to sing, ‘No child is illegal! No borders, no walls, sanctuary for all!’
One woman then brought up the audio released earlier this week in which children in a Texas detention center can be heard crying while border patrol officers laugh.
‘Have you listened to it?’ the woman asks Nielsen. ‘Do you hear the babies crying?’
‘How many more kids are you going to lock up?’ another protester asks. ‘How do you sleep at night?’
The crowd then begins to chant ‘end Texas contraction camps!’
‘No human being is illegal!’ they sing and chant during the protest. ‘No child is illegal! No borders, no walls, sanctuary for all!’ they yell
Nielsen did not acknowledge the protesters or look their way as they called her a ‘fascist pig’ and asked how she could sleep at night
One woman then addresses the diners at the restaurant, saying: ‘Kirstjen Nielsen will want you to think that we’re ruining your dinner’.
‘She’s the secretary of DHS, ICE rips children apart from their families every day. They lock them up in cages, they sleep under those silver blankets that you guys get at marathons.’
‘These kids will never be reunited with their parents because Kirstjen Nielsen’s staff doesn’t think it’s necessary to make a plan to reunite them with their parents.’
The woman then describes a detention center she had seen in Arizona, where she said she saw kids ‘alone’ and ‘in cages’, eating ‘peanut butter on tortillas’ and ‘frozen sandwiches that still have ice in them’.
‘Is that the kind of environment you would want your kid to be in when you are fleeing violence and trying to give them a better life?’ she asks the diners.
Nielsen was later seen leaving the restaurant and getting into a black van (pictured)
‘Because that is what Kirstjen Nielsen wants them to have. That is what she gets paid to do. What’s your salary Kirstjen? How much do you make locking up children?’
‘No borders, no walls, sanctuary for all,’ the crowd begins to chant again.
At this point Nielsen can be seen briefly talking on the phone before looking down at it again.
‘We are here tonight because DHS Secretary Nielsen is sitting right over there, trying to enjoy dinner as over 10,000 children have been ripped from their parents’ arms,’ one man tells the room of diners.
‘We say, you can’t enjoy dinner until you reunite all of those families and abolish ICE,’ he then tells Nielsen.
‘Kirstjen Nielsen, you’re a villain! Locking up innocent children!’ they then begin to chant.
Another video that was captured shows Nielsen and the man leaving the restaurant and entering a big black van.
The Secret Service and police arrived on the scene following the protest, as seen in a video that was later posted by members of the Democratic Socialists of America.
The DC chapter later released a statement about the protest, saying they will not ‘stand by and let Secretary Nielsen dine in peace’.
Nielsen has come under fire after she gave a press conference on Sunday about the Trump administration’s controversial policy to separate families at the border
But Trump made it clear on Tuesday that he supported Nielsen, tweeting praise for her
‘Secretary Nielsen and everyone else who has carried out these brutal and cold-blooded orders to rip apart families should never be allowed to eat and drink in public again,’ the statement read.
‘These barbarous acts must end and those at the helm must be held accountable. While Secretary Nielsen’s dinner may have been ruined, it is nothing compared to the horrors she has inflicted on innocent families.’
Nielsen’s spokesman Tyler Q Houlton also released a statement on Tuesday night, saying Nielsen heard from a ‘small group of protesters’ while ‘having a work dinner’.
Houlton said that the protesters shared Nielsen’s ‘concern with our current immigration laws that have created a crisis on our southern border’.
‘Sec. Nielsen encourages all – including this group – who want to see an immigration system that works, contributes to our economy, protects our security, & reflects our values reach out to Members & seek their support to close immigration loopholes that made our system a mess,’ he added.
Just hours before the protest, Donald Trump tweeted praise for how Nielsen handled a recent press conference regarding the ongoing controversy surrounding the policy.
‘Homeland Security @SecNielsen did a fabulous job yesterday at the press conference explaining security at the border and for our country, while at the same time recommending changes to obsolete & nasty laws, which force family separation,’ Trump tweeted. ‘We want “heart” and security in America!’
In May, Nielsen defended Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ ‘zero tolerance’ policy in which all those apprehended entering the US illegally, including those seeking asylum, would be criminally charged, which generally leads to children being separated from their parents
So Nielsen shocked many when, just a month later, she claimed there was no such policy
Trump and his administration have repeatedly and falsely claimed that families are being separated at the US-Mexico border due to a law.
In May, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced a ‘zero tolerance’ policy in which all those apprehended entering the US illegally, including those seeking asylum, would be criminally charged, leading children to being separated from their parents.
Nielsen defended the policy that month, saying that similar separations happen in the US ‘every day’.
‘Our policy is if you break the law, we will prosecute you,’ she said.
But during her press conference on Sunday, Nielsen attacked reporters and members of Congress and claimed they had been ‘misreporting’ details of the Trump administration’s immigration policy.
On Friday it was revealed that more than 2,000 children were separated from adults at the border between mid-April and the end of May
A two-year-old Honduran cries as her mother is searched and detained near the US-Mexico border on June 12
Outrage spread as footage was released from a detention center in McAllen, Texas that showed children sleeping on the floor behind cages
Many were especially baffled when Nielsen then claimed that ‘We do not have a policy of separating families at the border. Period.’
On Friday it was revealed that more than 2,000 children were separated from adults at the border between mid-April and the end of May.
And outrage spread as footage was released from a detention center in McAllen, Texas.
Furious backlash as ex-Trump campaign manager Corey…
‘We do not have a policy of separating families at the…
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Pictures showed children wrapped in plastic thermal blankets being ushered in, single file, past armed guards, waiting to lock the chain linked fenced cage behind them.
One cage had 20 children inside. Scattered about were bottles of water, bags of chips, and emergency space blankets.
One teenager told an advocate who visited that she was helping care for a young child she didn’t know because the child’s aunt was somewhere else in the facility.
She said she had to show others in her cell how to change the girl’s diaper.
One teenager told an advocate who visited that she was helping care for a young child she didn’t know because the child’s aunt was somewhere else in the facility
It has since been revealed that Trump administration officials are sending babies and other young children who are forcibly separated from their parents to at least three ‘tender age’ shelters in South Texas.
Lawyers and medical providers who have visited the Rio Grande Valley shelters described play rooms of crying preschool-age children in crisis.
The government also plans to open a fourth shelter to house hundreds of young migrant children in Houston, where city leaders denounced the move Tuesday.
Meanwhile, NBC has reported that a new desert tent city is reportedly preparing for more than 4,000 children and plans to house 20 to a tent.
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