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6 Arrested At CLT Airport As Police And Protesters Clash

A protest broke out at the Charlotte-Douglas International Airport on Saturday night in the wake of President Donald Trump's executive order banning refugees and citizens from seven Muslim-majority countries.

The gathering began around 9 p.m. and reached its peak about an hour later, when roughly 60 protesters swarmed the airport's baggage claim clutching homemade signs and chanting, "No hate. No fear. Immigrants are welcome here." Police kept a close perimeter.

"Donald Trump is Donald Trump," said the Rev. Jay McKinnon, a primary organizer of the protest, "He's doing what he said he would do. It's a resistance to that - to his policies - to him thinking that this is okay in our name."

The protest took a sharp turn shortly before 10 p.m. when members of Charlotte Uprising and Black Lives Matter began hurling expletives at CMPD officers and calling for justice for last year's police shooting of Keith Lamont Scott.

Police and protesters engaged in a brief skirmish. Six people were arrested. According to CMPD, they were Dhruv Pathak, 23; Samantha Valdez, 24; Eleanor Everette, 16; Michael Johnson, 24; Gloria Merriweather, 24; and James Marsicano, 23.

All were arrested for "Resist, Obstruct and Delay and Trespass" police said in a statement.

Following the scuffle, officers began requesting protesters leave the building, citing safety concerns. A select group of demonstrators lingered, before altogether dispersing shortly after 10:30 p.m.

As of early Saturday night, no one had been detained at the Charlotte airport as a result of Trump's order, said Aviation Director Brent Cagle. But multiple media outlets reported one Iranian man who had been detained in New York, Hameed Khalid Darweesh, was bound for Charlotte with his wife and three children.

Nick de la Canal is an on air host and reporter covering breaking news, arts and culture, and general assignment stories. His work frequently appears on air and online. Periodically, he tweets: @nickdelacanal