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Anti-abortion activists, counter-protesters rally around U.S.

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Posted at 3:34 PM, Feb 11, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-11 17:12:10-05

SEATTLE (AP) -- Anti-abortion activists emboldened by the new administration of President Donald Trump are staging rallies around the country calling for the federal government to cut off payments to Planned Parenthood. But in some cities the demonstrations are being dwarfed by counter-protests.

Thousands of Planned Parenthood supporters, many wearing the pointy-eared pink hats popularized by last month's women's marches, turned out for a rally in St. Paul, Minnesota, separated by barricades from an anti-abortion crowd of a couple hundred people.

In St. Louis, about 150 abortion opponents slightly outnumbered a group carrying pink signs that read, "I stand with Planned Parenthood."

In Detroit, about 300 people turned up outside a Planned Parenthood office, most of them supporting the organization.

Trump last month banned U.S. funding to international groups that perform abortions or even provide information about abortions. His newly confirmed health secretary, Tom Price, has supported cutting off federal money to Planned Parenthood.

Federal dollars don't pay for abortions, but the organization is reimbursed by Medicaid for other services, including birth control and cancer screening.

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