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'Occupy Wall Street' marks second anniversary in New York

An Occupy Wall Street protestor flashes a peace sign during a march on Broadway past a Chase bank in New York's financial district Sept 17, 2013."Occupy Wall Street" returned to the streets of New York on Tuesday to mark the second anniversary of the
An Occupy Wall Street protestor flashes a peace sign during a march on Broadway past a Chase bank in New York's financial district Sept 17, 2013."Occupy Wall Street" returned to the streets of New York on Tuesday to mark the second anniversary of the birth of the social protest movement. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
Occupy Wall Street protesters march on Broadway in New York Sept 17, 2013. The Occupy Wall Street movement celebrates its second anniversary on Tuesday. Some 250 people gathered at midday in Zuccotti Park in Manhattan's downtown financial distri
Occupy Wall Street protesters march on Broadway in New York Sept 17, 2013. The Occupy Wall Street movement celebrates its second anniversary on Tuesday. Some 250 people gathered at midday in Zuccotti Park in Manhattan's downtown financial district, where the movement first gained ground. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
Scores of protesters representing the Occupy Wall Street movement, march along Broadway on Tuesday, Sept 17, 2013, in the Soho section of New York. Some 250 people gathered at midday in Zuccotti Park in Manhattan's downtown financial district, w
Scores of protesters representing the Occupy Wall Street movement, march along Broadway on Tuesday, Sept 17, 2013, in the Soho section of New York. Some 250 people gathered at midday in Zuccotti Park in Manhattan's downtown financial district, where the movement first gained ground. -- PHOTO: AP 
Occupy Wall Street protesters stand outside a barricade at Zuccotti Park in New York Sept 17, 2013. The Occupy Wall Street movement celebrates their second anniversary on Sept 17. Some 250 people gathered at midday in Zuccotti Park in Manhattan'
Occupy Wall Street protesters stand outside a barricade at Zuccotti Park in New York Sept 17, 2013. The Occupy Wall Street movement celebrates their second anniversary on Sept 17. Some 250 people gathered at midday in Zuccotti Park in Manhattan's downtown financial district, where the movement first gained ground. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
Occupy Wall Street protesters stand on the steps of Federal Hall, across the street from the New York Stock Exchange in New York Sept 17, 2013. "Occupy Wall Street" returned to the streets of New York Tuesday to mark the second anniversary of th
Occupy Wall Street protesters stand on the steps of Federal Hall, across the street from the New York Stock Exchange in New York Sept 17, 2013. "Occupy Wall Street" returned to the streets of New York Tuesday to mark the second anniversary of the birth of the social protest movement. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
Occupy Wall Street protesters walk past businessmen watching from a window during a march from the United Nations building to Bryant Park on September 17, 2013 in New York City. Some 250 people gathered at midday in Zuccotti Park in Manhattan's
Occupy Wall Street protesters walk past businessmen watching from a window during a march from the United Nations building to Bryant Park on September 17, 2013 in New York City. Some 250 people gathered at midday in Zuccotti Park in Manhattan's downtown financial district, where the movement first gained ground. -- PHOTO: AFP
Workers from the Bank of India watch from a window as Occupy Wall Street protesters march 47th Street in New York September 17, 2013. "Occupy Wall Street" returned to the streets of New York Tuesday to mark the second anniversary of the birth of
Workers from the Bank of India watch from a window as Occupy Wall Street protesters march 47th Street in New York September 17, 2013. "Occupy Wall Street" returned to the streets of New York Tuesday to mark the second anniversary of the birth of the social protest movement. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
 Occupy Wall Street protesters attend a rally outside the United Nations building prior to marching to Bryant Park on September 17, 2013 in New York City.  "Occupy Wall Street" returned to the streets of New York on Tuesday to mark the
 Occupy Wall Street protesters attend a rally outside the United Nations building prior to marching to Bryant Park on September 17, 2013 in New York City.  "Occupy Wall Street" returned to the streets of New York on Tuesday to mark the second anniversary of the birth of the social protest movement. -- PHOTO: AFP
An Occupy Wall Street protester chants slogans along 47th Street in New York September 17, 2013. "Occupy Wall Street" returned to the streets of New York on Tuesday to mark the second anniversary of the birth of the social protest movement. -- P
An Occupy Wall Street protester chants slogans along 47th Street in New York September 17, 2013. "Occupy Wall Street" returned to the streets of New York on Tuesday to mark the second anniversary of the birth of the social protest movement. -- PHOTO: REUTERS
A police officer monitors Occupy Wall Street protesters as they march from the United Nations building to Bryant Park on September 17, 2013 in New York City. "Occupy Wall Street" returned to the streets of New York on Tuesday to mark the second
A police officer monitors Occupy Wall Street protesters as they march from the United Nations building to Bryant Park on September 17, 2013 in New York City. "Occupy Wall Street" returned to the streets of New York on Tuesday to mark the second anniversary of the birth of the social protest movement. -- PHOTO: AFP
An Occupy Wall Street protester participates in a march from the United Nations building to Bryant Park on September 17, 2013 in New York City. "Occupy Wall Street" returned to the streets of New York on Tuesday to mark the second anniversary of
An Occupy Wall Street protester participates in a march from the United Nations building to Bryant Park on September 17, 2013 in New York City. "Occupy Wall Street" returned to the streets of New York on Tuesday to mark the second anniversary of the birth of the social protest movement. -- PHOTO: AFP
A demonstrator associated with the Occupy Wall Street movement holding a sign referring to stop and frisk stands next to a group of police officers Tuesday, Sept 17, 2013 at Washington Square in New York. "Occupy Wall Street" returned to the str
A demonstrator associated with the Occupy Wall Street movement holding a sign referring to stop and frisk stands next to a group of police officers Tuesday, Sept 17, 2013 at Washington Square in New York. "Occupy Wall Street" returned to the streets of New York on Tuesday to mark the second anniversary of the birth of the social protest movement. -- PHOTO: AP 

NEW YORK (AFP) - "Occupy Wall Street" returned to the streets of New York on Tuesday to mark the second anniversary of the birth of the social protest movement.

Some 250 people gathered at midday in Zuccotti Park in Manhattan's downtown financial district, where the movement first gained ground.

As police kept a close eye, the activists then peacefully marched up Broadway to Washington Square. At least three people were arrested for blocking traffic.

The demonstrators carried signs with a multitude of messages. One read "Too much deregulation." "Disarm the Pentagon," read another.

The Occupy movement was born in New York on Sept 17, 2011, when a group of youths put up tents in Zuccotti Square to protest social and economic inequality with the slogan "We are the 99 per cent." It quickly spread to other US cities but fizzled out due to a lack of hierarchy and clear goals.

The tent camps were subsequently raided by police. In New York, authorities went in early on Nov 15, 2011, to clean up the square.

"I was here at the beginning," said Jason Woody, an activist marking Tuesday's anniversary.

"It's funny because a lot of people like to say that Occupy is dead, but it's not exactly what happened," the 29-year-old added.

Instead, he told AFP, people took what they learned by coming together back to their home communities to start other movements there.

"The things we did here did inspire people in all parts of the world, to stand up and take control," he said.

"It has been a long hard journey ...We changed the conversation in this country." Another demonstration was planned later Tuesday at the United Nations.