Hundreds of Occupy movement protesters stormed Cipriani restaurant last night to confront NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg ahead of this morning’s planned “eviction” of their Manhattan camp.
They went to Cipriani restaurant, where Michael Bloomberg attended a dinner, in an attempt to hand him a petition with 310,000 signatures supporting their right to remain in nearby Zuccotti Park.
The Occupy Wall Street demonstrators’ anger was triggered by the Bloomberg’s endorsement of Friday’s clean-up of the “unsanitary” encampment nearby Zuccotti Park.
Michael Bloomberg refused to come out of the restaurant, instead making his exit out of a back door.
NYC officials have ordered demonstrators to clear their sleeping bags and tarps from the park where they started the Occupy movement that has spread around the globe and forced CEOs and presidential candidates to take notice.
The activists said they wouldn’t be going anywhere on Friday morning, setting the stage for a dawn showdown with police.
Brookfield Office Properties, the owner of the private Zuccotti Park, where the demonstrators have camped out for nearly a month, said it has become trashed and “unsanitary”.
Brookfield Office Properties planned to begin a section-by-section power-washing of Zuccotti Park on Friday, at 7:00 a.m.
Patrick Bruner, the Occupy Wall Street spokesman, sent an email to supporters on Thursday asking them to join the demonstrators at 6:00 a.m. on Friday to “defend the occupation from eviction”.
Patrick Bruner also said that the clean-up effort of the authorities is a dirty trick to end their demonstrations.
The spokesman said Brookfield Properties asked for police assistance to clear it of protesters so that it could be cleaned on Friday.
According to Deputy Mayor Cas Holloway, the protest has “created unsanitary conditions and considerable wear and tear on” Zuccotti Park.
The cleaning was to be done in stages, and protesters were permitted to return to the park after cleaners were finished.
On Thursday, NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly told the New York Post that returning protesters will be prohibited from bringing tents, sleeping bags with them.
According to Ray Kelly, the protesters were notified of the new policy through pamphlets that were passed out to them by police officers.
The NYPD notice lists regulations including no tents, no tarps or sleeping bags on the ground, no lying on benches and no storage of personal property on the ground. All those practices have been common at the park, where protesters have lived, slept and eaten for nearly a month.