Latest developments in the global Occupy protests

AP News
Posted: Oct 21, 2011 7:55 PM
Latest developments in the global Occupy protests

Some of the latest developments in the Occupy protests taking place in cities across the world:


St. Paul's Cathedral has closed to the public because of Occupy London Stock Exchange protesters camped outside, church officials said Friday. The Dean of St. Paul's, the Rev. Graeme Knowles, said the decision to shut the doors of the iconic London church to visitors and tourists following the afternoon service was made with "heavy hearts." He said health, safety and fire concerns _ notably the presence of flammable liquids and stoves set up by protesters _ were at the heart of the issue because the church has an obligation to keep visitors safe.


New York residents near a park where Wall Street protesters have been camped out for more than a month are complaining their quality of life has declined. Some neighbors who attended a two-hour meeting Thursday said protesters urinate in the streets and beat drums at night. Some called for the protesters to leave. A community board passed a resolution that recognized the protesters' First Amendment rights and said it opposed the use of force by police or the parks' owners to address their concerns.

Pete Seeger's grandson said the 92-year-old activist musician was "all fired up" about plans for a late-night Manhattan march in support of Occupy Wall Street. Tao Rodriguez Seeger said he planned to play "Pied Piper" after performing with his grandfather and other musicians Friday night.

Leaders of New York's Muslim community held a prayer service at the anti-Wall Street protest.

About 70 Muslims knelt or sat at for a sermon Friday by Imam Aiyub Abdul Baki of the Islamic Leadership Council. The imam said Muslims support the Occupy Wall Street movement. He quoted the last sermon of the Prophet Muhammad about social justice.

The service was one of several religious observances that have taken place on the plaza. Jewish protesters have marked the holidays of Yom Kippur and Sukkot.

The Occupy movement reached the state's seat of political power Friday. An Occupy Albany encampment sprung up at a park across the street from the granite walls of the state Capitol. About 75 protesters, ranging from high school students to retirees, gathered in the afternoon.


Riot police in Australia's second-largest city broke up a demonstration after a group of about 100 people protesting corporate greed defied an order to vacate a plaza. Between 15 and 20 members of Occupy Melbourne were arrested, and around 20 people, including two police officers, suffered minor injuries, police said. Several demonstrators screamed and cried as police dragged and carried them away from the city square, where protesters had been camped out for nearly a week.


Occupy Cincinnati says its protest will continue despite the arrests of more than 20 members for refusing to leave a downtown park. Police arrested 23 people for trespassing early Friday, when the park was closed for the night.


Occupy New Hampshire protesters are planning to regroup _ and possibly relocate _ after a smattering of arrests in Manchester for trespassing. The protesters plan to gather at midday Saturday in Manchester's Veterans Park, the site of Wednesday night's arrests, to plot a course of action. Eighteen protesters were cited by Manchester police for violating a city ordinance prohibiting people from being in parks at night.


The brewing tension between Tampa police and Occupy Wall Street protesters led to at least six arrests early Friday after protesters refused to move off the sidewalk in front of Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park. Police say the protesters were violating city codes. Later, a small group of protesters marched toward police headquarters in downtown Tampa, chanting "arrest corrupt police." Police spokeswoman Andrea Davis said police are trying to be reasonable, arresting only those who are obstructing the sidewalk.


A pastor who says he was inspired by the Occupy Wall Street movement was arrested after refusing to leave Holland's city hall in protest of the southwestern Michigan city's decision not to expand its anti-discrimination ordinance. The Grand Rapids Press and WXMI-TV report the Rev. Bill Freeman was taken away in handcuffs late Wednesday. The Holland activist has campaigned for the city to expand the ordinance to include gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgender people.


An online petition is asking Mayor Rahm Emanuel to let Occupy Chicago protesters stay in Grant Park without being arrested. Organizers of the local anti-Wall Street protest say the petition had collected nearly 10,000 signatures Friday. Police arrested 175 protesters early Sunday after hundreds refused to take down tents and leave Grant Park when it closed at 11 the night before. Organizers didn't seek a permit to be in the park after hours, saying they stayed because they need a home base for the growing movement. The petition asks Emanuel to stop the arrests and respect protesters' right to assemble. It also says, "Don't let this end like 1968," an apparent reference to the Democratic National Convention of that year, when Chicago police violently clashed with about 10,000 protesters.


Some participants in the Occupy Providence protest say they'll take their tents and grievances to Brown University to protest a meeting of university leaders. An offshoot of Occupy Providence calling itself Occupy College Hill plans to camp out on the Brown University Main Green Friday night ahead of Saturday's meeting of the Corporation of Brown University, the group that oversees the Ivy League school. Members of Occupy College Hill say they want to call attention on Brown's exemption from local property taxes, its investment policies and what Occupy College Hill says is a lack of transparency in budgeting and governance.

Occupy Providence protesters have been camped out in the city's Burnside Park for a week in a gathering modeled on the Occupy Wall Street protests.