New York City police limited access to parts of Wall Street for a third day after a weekend of protests targeting financial firms. At least seven people were arrested since the demonstrations began.
The size of the protest, dubbed “OccupyWallStreet,” dwindled to about 200 people early today near Chase Manhattan Plaza, down from 1,000 on Sept. 17.
Four demonstrators were arrested today for wearing masks in violation of a law that bars two or more participants from doing so, and one was arrested for jumping a police barrier and resisting arrest, Paul Browne, a police spokesman, said in an e-mailed statement. Two masked protesters were arrested Saturday for trying to enter a building used by Bank of America Corp., he said.
Protesters are urging President Barack Obama to establish a commission to end “the influence money has over our representatives in Washington,” according to the website of Adbusters, a group that asked people to occupy Wall Street “for a few months.”
Police partitioned Wall Street’s pedestrian walkway throughout the weekend, preventing the protesters from gaining a toehold there. Pedestrians were limited today to sidewalks between Broadway and William Street.
Demonstrators marched around Wall Street and Broad Street, using the pedestrian walkways created by police, chanting, “All day, all week, occupy Wall Street.” Anyone who stops and disrupts pedestrian traffic is subject to arrest, Browne said.
The city established a demonstration area on Broad Street and Exchange Place, adjacent to the New York Stock Exchange, that protesters chose not to use, Browne said.
New York Stock Exchange owner NYSE Euronext, Deutsche Bank AG and Bank of New York Mellon Corp. are among firms with operations in the area. Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase & Co., Morgan Stanley and Citigroup Inc. are among financial firms whose main offices aren’t on Wall Street.
Rich Adamonis, a spokesman at NYSE Euronext, Duncan King of Deutsche Bank, and Bank of New York’s Ron Gruendl declined to comment on the demonstration.
Protests also are planned for financial districts in Madrid, Milan, London and Paris, according to a bulletin from the National Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Center obtained by Bloomberg News. The NCCIC is part of the Department of Homeland Security. Chris Ortman, an agency spokesman, confirmed the bulletin’s authenticity.
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