140 held in US pro-immigration protest
Washington – At least 140 demonstrators rallying for looser immigration rules were arrested on Thursday outside the White House for civil disobedience.
Community activists, Protestant pastors and some undocumented migrants were among the people arrested.
Hundreds of demonstrators called for US President Barack Obama to end deportations and find a way for millions of undocumented migrants to remain in the United States and work legally.
Demonstrators rallied outside the Washington headquarters of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the agency in charge of arresting and deporting undocumented migrants, before marching to the White House.
Several demonstrators engaged in a sit-in along the White House fence and unfurled a banner: "Obama, stop deportations."
"We are not one, we are not 10, we are millions, count us well," demonstrators shouted.
After three police warnings were ignored, officers arrested the protestors and brought them to a police station. They were expected to be released within a few hours, after paying 50-dollar fines.
Obama has vowed to implement some immigration changes through executive order, after legislation for comprehensive immigration reform failed in Congress in recent years.