Mar 21, 2012 10:36 PM IST | Source: Reuters

Police eject Occupy protesters from N.Y. park, arrest six

OCCUPY-NEWYORK:Police eject Occupy protesters from N.Y. park, arrest six

By Barbara Goldberg

NEW YORK (Reuters) - More than 100 protesters from the reawakened Occupy Wall Street movement were ejected from a New York City park in the pre-dawn hours of Wednesday after a standoff with police resulted in six arrests.

Police closed Union Square Park just north of Greenwich Village shortly after midnight (0400 GMT), ordering the crowd out, said a spokesman for the New York City Police Department.

"They were warned to leave the park due to it being closed," said a police spokesman. He added that no police or protesters were injured.

Witnesses said there were more than 100 protesters, but police declined to give a crowd estimate.

One man who refused to leave the park was arrested for disorderly conduct and violating a local law on park closure, according to police.

The crowd continued to mill around the area, and before dawn five other men were arrested for blocking pedestrian traffic, police said. Charges against them range from obstruction of justice to resisting arrest.

After months of dormancy, the Occupy movement gathered last weekend to mark the six months since its founding in lower Manhattan's Zuccotti Park to decry U.S. financial policies they blame for the yawning income gap between rich and poor. The event resulted in 76 arrests, police said.

Union Square Park was expected to be filled with crowds on Wednesday evening to demand the arrest of a neighborhood watch volunteer, identified as white by police, in the fatal shooting of an unarmed black Florida teenager.

The victim, Trayvon Martin, reportedly had put up his hooded sweatshirt when the volunteer spotted him.

"Organizers of the New York City protest are asking people from across the city to throw on their hoodie and join others in Union Square ... as they demand justice for the murder of Trayvon Martin," organizers said in a statement.

(Editing by Paul Thomasch and Xavier Briand)

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