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Protesters block traffic on Michigan Avenue, call for end to deportations

Updated: May 29, 2013 11:53AM

A dozen protesters chained themselves together and lay down in the middle of South Michigan Avenue on Wednesday, calling for an end to deportations of illegal immigrants.

The protesters, undocumented immigrants or members of the National People’s Action group, used bike chains and PVC pipe to latch themselves together in front of the Hilton Chicago hotel, 720 S. Michigan, where President Barack Obama will attend a fundraiser Wednesday afternoon.

Charlene Carruthers, a spokeswoman for the group, said the protesters showed up well in advance of Obama’s expected arrival at the Hilton Chicago because they wanted their message to stand out.

“We’re anticipating there will be a number of folks out today fighting for different issues and we wanted to make sure the issue of immigration reform and (stopping) all deportations was heard,” Carruthers said.

Police cut through the PVC to arrest the 12 without incident as hotel personnel looked on.

The group wants Obama to suspend deportations of illegal immigrants until a comprehensive immigration bill passes.

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