Early Tuesday morning, New York City police in riot gear raided the Occupy Wall Street encampment in Zucotti Park, clearing protesters and arresting more than 150.
Police arrested more than 100 people, according to Deputy Police Commissioner Paul Browne. New York City Council member Ydanis Rodriguez was among those arrested, his spokesman, David Segal, told CNN.
Medical crews treated three people for minor injuries, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said. A police officer was also hospitalized after experiencing heart palpitations, he said.
Continuing concerns about public health and safety and the impact of the protests on nearby businesses, as well as the rights of others to use the park, prompted city officials to dismantle the camp, Bloomberg said. While the city has a long history of embracing free expression, circumstances at the park had become "unbearable," he said....
"We have an obligation to enforce the laws today, to make sure that everybody has access to the park so everybody can protest. That's the First Amendment and it's number one on our minds," Bloomberg said. "We also have a similar, just as important obligation to protect the health and safety of the people in the park."
Tuesday morning, several hundred protesters marched from Foley Square, where they had gathered after the park was cleared, to City Hall, chanting "We are unstoppable, another world is possible" and "This is what democracy looks like."
City officials briefly reopened the park Tuesday morning after it had been cleaned. But Bloomberg said police had to ask the 50 people who had been allowed back in to leave after city officials learned of a court order that reportedly bars the city from enforcing some rules at the park.
It will remain closed until officials can clarify the legal situation, he said.
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