Activists plan April protests

Anti-war demonstrators will join World Bank and International Monetary Fund protesters in D.C. next month for demonstrations across the city.

An association of more than 200 organizations led by the National Youth and Student Peace announced plans last week to demonstrate against the Unites States’ war on terrorism April 20 and 21.

Organizers predict hundreds of war protesters will march from the Washington Monument to the front steps of the Capitol, where a rally is planned.

Other demonstrations are also planned at the IMF and World Bank, located blocks from GW’s campus.

John Petrie, assistant vice president for Public Safety and Emergency Management, said the University is in contact with Metropolitan Police and the IMF to monitor the danger of the protests near GW, which are expected to be smaller than the anti-war demonstrations by the monuments.

“GW will prepare to do all the things we already have planned for that weekend, but we will approach each of those things with significant caution, watching for the development of a different expectation regarding the IMF demonstration size,” he said.

Petrie said activists are still planning for the weekend. As of now officials do not anticipate closing streets near campus, but they may increase police presence in the area.

MPD declined to release how many protesters they expect or if any extra safety precautions are planned for the weekend.

Hosting groups include the National Youth and Student Peace Coalition, National Coalition for Peace and Justice, 9-11 Emergency National Network and NYC Labor Against War. Other groups include the Center for Constitutional Rights, the Center for Peace and Humanity, the National Youth Advocacy Coalition and the Communist Party USA.

“Let us work toward a world beyond war and terrorism,” said Damu Smith, co-coordinator of the event. “Let’s invest in education and health care instead of war and in our children instead of war.”

Organizers of the anti-war movement have compiled six demands for Congress and the Bush administration, including:

– a U.S. foreign policy based upon social and economic justice, not military oppression

– government funding for the victims of the Sept. 11 attacks and the recession

– an end to racial profiling and military recruitment targeting youths of color

– an end to the degrading and secret imprisonment of immigrants

– full disclosure of military contracts with universities

– increased funding for non-military-based financial aid for education

-Marcus Mrowka contributed to this report.

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