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It follows a Commerce Department decision this month to impose tariffs averaging about 31 percent on solar cells and panels imported from China.

China has called the U.S. action on solar equipment unfair and warned that higher tariffs could hurt efforts to promote clean energy.

NORTH CAROLINA

Groups plan pre-convention protest of Democrats

CHARLOTTE | Charlotte has given permission to a coalition to hold a major protest the weekend before the Democratic National Convention.

The long-awaited permits are being issued after the Coalition to March on Wall Street South collected petitions with more than 1,000 names demanding that the North Carolina city approve the Sept. 2 protest. The petitions were handed to city leaders this week.

Coalition spokesman Ben Carroll said Wednesday that organizers have been pressuring the city since filing the permit paperwork eight months ago. The coalition plans to protest economic policies that it says hurt working families.

He called it a victory, but says the groups still want Charlotte to take other measures, including repealing a new ordinance that tightens security during so-called “extraordinary events.”

The convention is being held Sept. 4-6.

From wire dispatches and staff reports