Counterprotest derails 'free speech' rally in USA city

Counterprotest derails 'free speech' rally in USA city

Counterprotest derails 'free speech' rally in USA city

Among an estimated crowd of 40,000 protesters there were 27 arrests for disorderly conduct and some for altercations with police. "Hundreds of others danced in circles and sang, 'Hey hey, ho ho. White supremacy has got to go".

As of about 2 p.m. Saturday, officers were trying to contain counter-protesters, even arresting some, according to NBC Boston reporter Abbey Niezgoda. The situation quickly calmed.

In Boston, rally organizers had invited "libertarians, conservatives, traditionalists, classical liberals, Trump supporters or anyone else who enjoys their right to free speech", according to a group calling itself the Boston Free Speech Coalition, which sought to distance itself from the violence in Charlottesville on its Facebook page.

The almost 500 police officers deployed for crowd control at the event were left dealing with counterprotesters when the participants of the "free speech" rally left the bandstand at the park, according to media reports. The handful of rally attendees gathered beneath a pavilion near the center of the Common, surrounded by metal barriers and dozens of police.

"I want to applaud the many protestors in Boston who are speaking out against bigotry and hate. We just can't sit down for this one".

The group said they were not affiliated with last week's Charlottesville rally in any way and their group had nothing to do with racism or white nationalism. "I think they'll think again about coming here". Members of the Ku Klux Klan told the Boston Herald that they expect several of their members to attend.

Boston Mayor Marty Walsh briefly joined the crowd of thousands assembling for the march. But they don't have the right to create unsafe conditions.

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Some people fear the Boston event will be a white nationalist rally like the one in Charlottesville. We're not standing (for) white supremacy. "We are out here to add an extra body to the numbers of those who resist", said Katie Zipps, who travelled from Malden, north of Boston, for the counter-protest.

Walsh later tweeted there is no place for hatred in the city.

A counterprotester held up a sign on Tremont Street.

Members of the Black Lives Matter movement later protested on the Common, where a Confederate flag was burned and protesters pounded on the sides of a police vehicle.

Demonstrators started marching Saturday morning from the city's Roxbury neighborhood.

The mayor of Boston has said that the city will shut the rallies down if there is a hint of violence and has deployed at least 500 extra police officers in preparation for crowd control.

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