Hundreds of people marched through downtown Minneapolis on Friday afternoon, stopping traffic and forcing officials to block off several streets and divert traffic.

The protest, which began around 2:45 p.m. outside the Wells Fargo Center building, was aimed at getting Minnesota banks to resume business with local money transfer shops, which are used by many Somali-Americans to send dollars to their loved ones back in Somalia.

As part of the protest, an unknown number of people also closed their accounts at the bank. The demonstration was tied to a May 11 deadline for banks set by supporters of the Somali money-wiring businesses. They have been pressing Wells Fargo, where many Minnesota Somalis bank, to provide banking services to the struggling money-wiring outfits.

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