Trump fled to bunker as protests over George Floyd raged outside White House

Washington, (ST)  -  US President Donald Trump has been unable to hide his anger at the news that revealed his hiding in the bunker of the White House known as "Doomsday" due to the protests that took place in his vicinity against the backdrop of the murder of African-American George Floyd at the hands of a police officer.

Donald Trump was taken to the secure White House bunker, usually reserved for times of war or terrorist attacks, in the midst of noisy protests on Friday about the killing of George Floyd by police, and sporadic clashes close to the presidential complex’s perimeter.

According to several accounts by unnamed officials, Trump spent nearly an hour sequestered in the austere suite of hardened underground rooms designed for use in grave emergencies, and in which the then vice-president, Dick Cheney, took shelter during the 9/11 attacks.

The decision to move the president to the bunker was attributed to US Secret Service officers tasked with protecting him. It was taken as chants from protesters in nearby Lafayette Park could be heard in the White House, and Secret Service and DC and park police were required to push back demonstrators from barriers close to the White House, some of whom were throwing stones and water bottles.

According to the American source, Trump was frustrated to be portrayed as worried about the protests outside the White House and his hiding place because it "seemed weak to the public."

The protests began in the city of Minneapolis, Minnesota, after a video showed the death of George Floyd, a black man who died after a white police officer pressed his knee on his neck until he stopped breathing.

Raghda Sawas