‘Occupy’ protests grow, protesters maced

A San Diego Police officer maces a demonstrator at the Civic Center Plaza on Friday.
A San Diego Police officer maces a demonstrator at the Civic Center Plaza on Friday.
Lenny Ignelzi/AP Photo

A standoff between police and anti-Wall Street protesters today in San Diego resulted in more pepper spray being used by officers. The Associated Press reports that police were breaking up a human chain formed by the “Occupy” protesters after they refused to remove a tent.

Police in the early morning began removing about a half-dozen tents after warning demonstrators their personal belongings couldn’t stay in the Occupy San Diego camp. Demonstrators can continue protesting without the tents, tarps and tables, authorities said.

One man was arrested before 8 a.m. for interfering with a police officer after he sat down and refused to take away his tent, police Lt. Andra Brown said. After he and his tent were removed, other demonstrators erected another tent and formed a human chain around it.

Shortly before noon, officers pulled apart the protesters and used pepper spray to disperse them. No one was arrested or injured, although protesters said several demonstrators were suffering burning eyes from the pepper spray, assistant Chief Boyd Long said.

Meanwhile, “Occupy” organizers are planning to go global, tomorrow. Rallies are being planned for Saturday in London, Frankfurt, Auckland, Rome, Washington, and New York. In all, organizers hope to see demonstrations in 951 cities across Europe, the Americas, Asia, Africa, and Australia.

Organizers for “Occupy Melbourne” put a statement on their website reading, in part:

Why Occupy Melbourne?

We face similar problems with our democracy here in Victoria and Australia as people face in most other developed nations. Our democracy is unwell. Our elected representatives no longer represent their constituents, instead their ears are turned by wealthy lobby groups, whilst the common interests of the people they were elected to represent, are ignored. Some levels of our government are also rife with corruption.

Organizers here in New York are also planning to continue their demonstrations, even as protests in lower Manhattan have seen some violence in the past 24 hours.


'Occupy' protests grow, protesters maced