Saturday, November 10, 2007

War protesters clash with police in Olympia staff

OLYMPIA, Wash. – Members of the Olympia Port Militarization Resistance planted themselves at the main gate of the Port of Olympia Friday night in an attempt to block military traffic.

The anti-war protesters remained there through the night, and say they succeeded in blocking at least two military vehicles.

By Saturday morning, the Olympian newspaper reported that police were able to clear the entrance to the port.

But protesters remained in the area, and have tried to block more military traffic again. Police in riot gear used pepper-spray and batons to break them up, and a KING 5 reporter saw two protesters being taken into custody this morning.

At one point protesters began throwing large debris into the roadway to block military traffic, but when they realized it was the wrong thing to do, they helped clear the debris.

According to a press release, OlyPMR was founded in 2006 when "Olympia peace activists attempted to block outgoing Strykers and other military equipment in advance of the deployment of the 3rd Brigade Stryker Team from Ft. Lewis."

This week, the group released this statement:

"We oppose Olympia's complicity in a war whose disastrous effects have been felt worldwide and we will actively resist the use of Olympia's port to further that war ... Through nonviolent actions we intend to stop the Port of Olympia from becoming a revolving door of military machinery furthering illegal war."

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