Protesters were arrested yesterday after hanging a large banner reading ‘Abolish ICE’ on the base of the Statue of Liberty. One woman involved with the sign caused Liberty Island to be evacuated after she climbed up into the folds of the statue’s robes and refused to come down for four hours in protest of families being separated at the border.
Therese Okoumou ascended around 100 feet above ground onto the statue. After an hours-long, televised standoff with police, she climbed down to the observation deck and was taken into custody.
Initially, it had been thought Okoumou was not involved with the other protesters holding the ICE banner; but Jay W. Walker, a member of Rise and Resist, who organized the protest, later explained that she had been involved but the group had not known of her intentions to climb.
ICE, the United States’ Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, is responsible for arresting and deporting immigrants who’ve entered the country illegally. Under Trump’s zero-tolerance policy, more than 2,000 children entering the country have been separated from their parents at the border over six weeks.