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Appeals court rules Seattle had right to block streets during 1999 WTO protests

[JURIST] The US Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled [opinion, PDF] Thursday that the city of Seattle had the right to block city streets during violent protests against the 1999 World Trade Organization [official website] meeting in the city. The court nonetheless reversed and sent part of the lower court's decision back for retrial, saying, "in some instances police conduct may have gone too far and infringed on certain individual protestors' constitutional rights." Approximately 50,000 anti-globalization protestors rushed the downtown Seattle area in November 1999 during a WTO ministerial meeting held to discuss international trade issues, resulting in mass arrests and damage of $2.5 million that went down in journalistic and protest lore as the Battle of Seattle [BBC report]. AP has more.

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