Occupy Seattle protesters ordered to remove tents

Occupy Seattle protesters ordered to remove tents »Play Video
Police remove a demonstrator involved in the Occupy Seattle movement.
SEATTLE -- Seattle police have arrested at least 25 Occupy Seattle demonstrators who refused to remove their tents from Westlake Park.

The arrests were peaceful as demonstrators engaged in civil disobedience and supporters banged drums and chanted, "Whose park is this?"

An estimated 30 Seattle police officers arrived in Westlake Park Wednesday afternoon after Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn requested the protestors remove their tents from the park.

In a statement on the city website, McGinn said he supports the efforts of the protesters, but cannot allow one group to take over the park.

"Erecting tents in the park has the effect of displacing others who have a right to be there," he wrote. "Therefore, we will be asking those who have set up tents in Westlake Park to remove them."

Late Wednesday night, the remaining demonstrators planned to stay at Westlake Parks without tents.

The group at the park is protesting against corporate greed and social inequality in solidarity with similar protests taking place in New York.

Several powerful unions joined the New York demonstrations on Wednesday, lending some focus, credibility and potentially hundreds of participants to a group that started out with a few camped-out college students.

Among those planning to join the clamor were members of the Chinatown Tenants Union and the Transit Workers Union, the liberal group MoveOn.org, and community organizations like the Working Families Party and United NY. Organizers have called for students at college campuses across the nation to walk out of class in protest.

The Occupy Wall Street protests started on Sept. 17 with a few dozen demonstrators who tried to pitch tents in front of the New York Stock Exchange. Since then, hundreds have set up camp in a park nearby and have become increasingly organized, lining up medical aid and legal help and printing their own newspaper, the Occupied Wall Street Journal.