For Immediate Release
Medea Benjamin, 415-235-6517
Jodie Evans, 310-621-5635
Jean Stevens, 508-769-2138
Four CODEPINK Women Arrested at 4 p.m. in St. Paul in Act of Civil Disobedience
MINNEAPOLIS/ST. PAUL - Four members of the CODEPINK Women for Peace activist group were arrested around 4 p.m. today at a peaceful demonstration in downtown St. Paul.
The women, Desiree Fairooz, 52, of Arlington, TX, Toby Blome, 53 of El Cerrito, Cali., Kit Siemen, 50, of Quilcene, WA and Nancy Mancias, 38, of San Francisco, were with a group of about 30 CODEPINK members in a plaza near the intersection of Market and 6th St. In protest of the war and Republican vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin's pro-war and pro-drilling positions, the CODEPINK women had been singing and dancing in crowns, sashes and pink clothing, when police surrounded them and began to push them up onto the sidewalk and against a metal fence set up in the plaza. The women complied but continued to be pushed to the side and were told clear out. In symbolic sign of civil disobedience, saying free speech cannot be caged and all of America is a free speech zone, the four women tried to crawl under the fence. Police pulled them through to the other side and arrested them.
Until the arrest, the group had been protesting and police had been responding peacefully. They gathered near the St. Paul Hotel with banners reading "Palin is not a woman's choice" and "End the occupation now and singing songs like "We are ready for a peaceful world" and marched, with dozens of police close by, down Market St when they turned around and marched back to the intersection of Market and 5th.
For more information, please call 508-769-2138.