Friday, November 4, 2011

Freight Facilities Reopen At Port of Oakland After Protest Violence

Occupy Wall Street Close West Coast Hub for 24 Hours
Shipping News Feature

USA – After violent scenes between some demonstrators and police the Port of Oakland, the USA’s fourth largest port by annual tonnage handled, has been reopened after being closed for almost 24-hours since Wednesday evening by the ‘Occupy Oakland’ offshoot of the ‘Occupy Wall Street’ movement.

The port had been closed after a march of several thousand people moved from downtown Oakland to the port area. Though generally peaceful, violence started in the city centre after some protestors were alleged to have occupied a building and thrown bricks and bottles at police, who responded with tear gas and made 101 arrests. This violent minority has been condemned by other members of the movement.

In a statement the Port authorities said: “Maritime activities at the Port of Oakland are back to normal with all terminals open for business. We appreciate the efforts of our tenants, business, and labor partners, to get back to work and back to business today.”

They also warned that continued disruption to the Port’s activities - which handles some $39 billion of trade every year - could jeopardise tens of thousands of jobs in the area.