UK Police arrest 20 as they dismantle Occupy camp

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LONDON — Authorities dismantled Occupy London's camp outside the famous St. Paul's Cathedral in a dramatic early hours raid Tuesday, clearing away one of the longest-surviving encampments.

The City of London police said 20 people had been arrested as officers removed tents and equipment from outside the 300-year-old church, where demonstrators had camped since mid-October.

Britain's High Court last Wednesday rejected the protesters' legal challenge to an eviction order. Local authorities claimed the camp had harmed nearby businesses, caused waste and hygiene problems, and attracted crime and disorder.

“Its really sad what's happening today but I think we can be proud of what we've achieved,” said Kai Wargalla, a 27-year-old student from Germany who had camped outside St. Paul's since October. “Our community is being attacked here, but we're going to reconvene and come back stronger.”

Printed on Wednesday, February 29, 2012 as: Persistent Occupy London camp finally shut down by the city