Massachusetts governor activates up to 1,000 National Guard members

Oleksii Liskonih/iStockBy KIARA BRANTLEY-JONES, ABC News

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker signed an order on Friday obtained by ABC News, activating up to 1,000 National Guard members in the state.

The Republican governor did not cite a specific reason for signing the order.

The activation began on Friday and will continue until “further order” of the state’s senior National Guard officer, according to the statement.

The deployment is to “provide necessary assistance to State and local civilian authorities and/or special duty and emergency assistance for the preservation of life and property, preservation of order, and to afford protection to persons,” the order says.

The Guard members are being deployed “in the event that municipal leaders require their assistance,” according to a statement released by an unnamed spokesperson for the state’s Executive Office of Public Safety and Security, and is “only at the request of, and in coordination with, the communities seeking support.”

The order comes amid protests in Wisconsin sparked by civil unrest over police brutality. Jacob Blake, a 29-year-old Black man, was shot by a police officer in Kenosha, Wisconsin, on Sunday night.

Wisconsin’s Democratic Gov. Tony Evers announced Wednesday he authorized 500 members of the Wisconsin National Guard to support local law enforcement there after three people were shot and two killed in Kenosha overnight Tuesday into Wednesday.

There were, however, no known major protests planned in Massachusetts this weekend.

ABC News’ Ahmad Hemingway contributed to this report.

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