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NFL To Hand Out Fines For National Anthem Protests

The USA's National Football League has taken a stand against players protesting during the national anthem.

Some NFL players knelt during the anthem to protest police shootings of unarmed black men, sparking a controversy that pulled in even US President Donald Trump, who criticised the players as being unpatriotic.

NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said on Wednesday teams will be fined if players on the field fail to stand during the Star-Spangled Banner.

Players who choose not to stand may now remain in the locker room until after the anthem is finished.

The NFL Players Association criticised the new policy, saying it was not consulted and that it may issue a challenge.

"Telling peaceful protesters to leave and do it behind closed doors is dangerous and un-American," the American Civil Liberties Union said on Twitter.

The White House did not immediately respond to requests for comment on Wednesday, but Vice President Mike Pence tweeted a headline about the new policy with the comment "#Winning."

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