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Boston, cradle of liberty, braces for spirited protests

August 19, 2017

BOSTON (AP) — Conservative activists and leftist counterprotesters are preparing for a showdown on Boston Common that could draw thousands a week after a demonstration in Virginia turned deadly.

Police say they’ll be out in force to keep the two groups apart. Boston’s Democratic mayor, Marty Walsh, and Massachusetts’ Republican governor, Charlie Baker, have warned that extremist unrest won’t be tolerated in this city famed as the cradle of American liberty.

Organizers of Saturday’s midday “Free Speech Rally” have publicly distanced themselves from the neo-Nazis, white supremacists and others who fomented violence in Charlottesville on Aug. 12.

Boston’s rally is the first potentially large and racially charged gathering in a major U.S. city since a car plowed into counter-demonstrators in Charlottesville, killing a woman and injuring scores of others.

Events also are planned Saturday in Atlanta and Dallas.

Update hourly