Police have dispersed protesters from Melbourne’s City Square and will continue to monitor proceedings as the Occupy Melbourne Rally moves to the State Library.

Police have arrested around 50 protestors at the rally today.

Around 400 police officers, including members of the Public Order Response Team, Mounted Branch, Dog Squad, Search and Rescue team and uniform members, swooped on the city today to remove protestors.

Police stepped in this morning to remove protestors who refused to leave following a Melbourne City Council directive.

Police shut down the protestors’ City Square camp earlier today and are currently on the scene as protestors march towards the State Library.

There were no significant injuries to police or protestors during the incident.

Up to eight police vehicles were damaged during the incident, including several car tyres being slashed.

Assistant Commissioner Stephen Fontana said it was disappointing that some protesters had refused to leave, forcing police to act.

“Police have used the least amount of force necessary when removing protestors from the City Square,” Supt. Fontana said.

“Every protestor was repeatedly given advance warning of police intentions prior to removing them.

“It’s disappointing that it’s come to this, however the protestors were ordered to move on and were given every opportunity to do so peacefully.

“It’s Victoria Police’s job to restore order and ensure the safety of the whole community.”

Victoria Police will continue to monitor the protestors movements while they remain in the CBD area.

Belinda Nolan

Media Officer

VP14851

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