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Palestinian Supporters Block Golden Gate Bridge in Nationwide Protest
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By Associated Press
Published 1 month ago on
April 15, 2024

Pro-Palestinian demonstrators caused major traffic issues Monday across the Bay Area, including on I-880 and the Golden Gate Bridge. (Screengrab/ABC7)

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Pro-Palestinian demonstrators caused major traffic issues Monday across the San Francisco Bay Area, including on I-880 in Oakland and the Golden Gate Bridge.

The demonstrations were part of a worldwide economic blockade in solidarity with Palestine, pro-Gaza supporters said.

Traffic in the Bay Area was snarled for hours as demonstrators shut down all vehicle, pedestrian, and bike traffic on the Golden Gate Bridge and chained themselves to 55-gallon drums filled with cement across Interstate 880 in Oakland.

About 20 protesters were arrested at the Golden Gate Bridge demonstration and traffic resumed shortly after noon, according to the California Highway Patrol. The agency said officers were making arrests at two points on the interstate, including one spot where roughly 300 protesters refused orders to disperse,

“Attempting to block or shut down a freeway or state highway to protest is unlawful, dangerous, and prevents motorists from safely reaching their destinations,” the agency said in a statement.

 

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Nationwide Protests

Elsewhere:

  • Protesters marching into Brooklyn blocked Manhattan-bound traffic on the Brooklyn Bridge.
  • The Washington State Department of Transportation said a demonstration closed the main road to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.
  • In Eugene, Oregon, protesters blocked Interstate 5, shutting down traffic on the major highway for about 45 minutes.
  • A freeway to three Chicago O’Hare International Airport terminals, temporarily stopped vehicle traffic into one of the nation’s busiest airports and caused headaches for travelers.

The Scene in Chicago

Protesters linked arms and blocked lanes of Chicago’s Interstate 190 around 7 a.m., a demonstration they said was part of a global “economic blockade to free Palestine,” according to Rifqa Falaneh, one of the organizers.

O’Hare warned travelers on the social platform X to take alternative forms of transportation with car travel “substantially delayed this morning due to protest activity.”

Videos on social media showed some travelers exiting vehicles and walking alongside the freeway, wheeling suitcases behind them.

While individual travelers may have been delayed, operations at the airport appeared near normal with delays of under 15 minutes, according to the Chicago Department of Aviation.

Dozens of protesters were taken into Chicago police custody, according to Falaneh. Police did not immediately have further details.

Protesters say they chose the location, in part, because O’Hare is one of the largest airports.

New York Police made numerous arrests, saying 150 protesters were initially involved in the march around 3:15 p.m., but that number quickly grew. The bridge was fully reopened by 5 p.m.

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