Chicago bans anti-NATO protests
According to a statement release by the White House, "the United States looks forward to hosting the G-8 and NATO Summits. To facilitate a free-flowing discussion with our close G-8 partners, the president is inviting his fellow G-8 leaders to Camp David on May 18-19 for the G-8 Summit, which will address a broad range of economic, political and security issues.”
This past Thursday, the city of Chicago issued a letter of denial to an identical request to the same group to move their march from Saturday, May 19, to Sunday, May 20.
According to the city, the request was rejected due to the lack of police officers in combination with security concerns and logistical nightmares that could arise from the annual event.
“Motorcades for the NATO attendees will create significant traffic impediments, which would be exacerbated by the 2.64 mile proposed parade route,” wrote Mike Simon the assistant commissioner of the Chicago Department of Transportation.
The formerly accepted parade route for May 19 was initially going to kick off at Daley Plaza and continue southward to McCormick Place, where world leaders were slated to meet.
The route for the new application that was submitted had no change in the route.
Originally the two summits were going to be held in the Windy City, but due to the attention brought on by these high-profile meetings Obama’s decision has thrown a wrench in the demonstrators’ plans.
As RT previously reported, in 2010 the G-20 Summit in Toronto resulted in one of the largest mass arrest in Canada’s history and this is Chicago’s attempt at avoiding a public disaster.
Although many believe the city of Chicago is the villain in the recent occurrence, they have offered the protesters an alternative route chosen by city officials to protest against the summit.
Even though the city has given the march a second option, Andy Thayer, the permit applicant has rejected the proposal citing the new path circumvents the epicenter of the summit defeating the purpose.
Thayer has claimed he will continue to meet with the city in hopes of “working something out."
According to the Chicago Tribune, the assistant commissioner of the Chicago Department of Transportation said the “movement of up to 5,000 NATO delegates and staff from various locations, including the city center, to McCormick Place, the site of the event, and the associated entry to the event site on this date will require heightened security, traffic re-routing, and security checkpoints and will demand large numbers of police and other city resources. In addition to covering the entire downtown area, including the hotel zone, business district and routing traffic near and to McCormick Place, police and other city resources will also be required to provide protection and services to the rest of the city.”