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Group Appeals NATO Protest Ruling

Protesters are in court to appeal a decision rejecting the group's application to move the date of their previously approved application

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Protesters held a news conference Tuesday before heading to court to appeal a City of Chicago decision denying their request to move the date of a previously approved G8 march to coincide with the NATO meeting.

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UPDATE: Denial of protest permit upheld...

Protesters appealed in court Tuesday a City of Chicago decision denying their request to move the date of a previously approved G8 march to coincide with the NATO meeting.

"There are people coming from around the United States and around the world to raise their voices against NATO and the war-makers, as well as the NATO and G8 agenda," said Joe Isobaker, a member of CAN-G8.

After President Barack Obama pulled the G8 out of Chicago, the Coalition Against the NATO/G8 War & Poverty Agenda reapplied to move the march one day later than the one for which they were approved.

Their orginal application allowed them to march from Daley Plaza to within earshot of McCormick Place on May 19.

The second application, for May 20, was denied because of what the Chicago Department of Transportation called congestion and security concerns that come with the larger NATO summit.

"There are not available at the time of the parade a sufficient number of on-duty police officers," said Assistant CDOT Commissioner Michael Simon in a statement.

CAN-G8 leaders say they don't buy it.

"The city's arguments about not having enough on-duty police personnel and other personnel to deal with policing, the parade and so forth are transparently bogus," said CAN-G8 member Andy Thayer.

City leaders for months have touted Chicago's ability to handle both the G8 and the NATO summits along with all the accompanying protests. Protesters argue that if police numbers were an issue, then the city should have declined hosting the summit in the first place.

"We don't believe that the city has any rational or objective basis for denial of the permit under ordinances either old or new," said CAN-G8 attorney Jeffrey Frank. "And that's what we intend to prove in court today."

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