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You are here News Domestic (USA) Thousands march through Boston week after Virginia bloodshed

Thousands march through Boston week after Virginia bloodshed

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Thousands march through Boston to protest hateThousands of leftist counterprotesters marched peaceably through downtown Boston on Saturday, chanting anti-Nazi slogans and waving signs condemning white nationalism ahead of a rally being staged by conservative activists a week after a Virginia demonstration turned deadly.

Police Commissioner William Evans said Friday that 500 officers — some in uniform, others undercover — were deployed to keep the two groups apart Saturday. Boston's Democratic mayor, Marty Walsh, and Massachusetts' Republican governor, Charlie Baker, both warned that extremist unrest wouldn't be tolerated in this city famed as the cradle of American liberty.

Organizers of the midday event, billed as a "Free Speech Rally," have publicly distanced themselves from the neo-Nazis, white supremacists and others who fomented violence in Charlottesville on Aug. 12. A woman was killed at that Unite the Right rally, and scores of others were injured, when a car plowed into counterdemonstrators.

But opponents feared that white nationalists might show up in Boston anyway, raising the specter of ugly confrontations in the first potentially large and racially charged gathering in a major U.S. city since Charlottesville.

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