NEWARK – Protesters who have been occupying Newark’s Military Park for the past two months have been instructed to remove their belongings and leave the park by 9 p.m. tonight.
Unlike most of the “Occupy Wall Street” protest camps that sprung up in cities around the nation last fall, Occupy Newark had enjoyed a measure of support from the city government. In December, Newwark’s Municipal Council adopted a resolution allowing the Occupy Newark movement to remain in Military Park beyond the 9 p.m. curfew set by city ordinance.
The original resolution granted permission for 30 days, and it had been extended. However, a letter from City Clerk Robert P. Marasco informed the protesters that the Municipal Council did not wish to continue the arrangement past a Feb. 8 deadline. “As a result your organization will be required to remove all individuals and equipment from Military Park as of 9:00 P.M. beginning Thursday, February 9, 2012,” the letter said.
In a response posted to the OccupyNewark Twitter account, the movement wrote “Being one of the last encampments in the country, we are humbly requesting an extension of stay until Thursday, February 16, 2012. The Occupy Newark Movement has between 30 to 40 occupiers dwelling in the park, most of which are homeless and Newark residents. We receive housing, food, comfort and emotional support on a daily basis. The council’s decision to displace us may have inhumane effects.”
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