Counterprotesters confront white nationalists in D.C.

Posted August 13, 2018

US President Donald Trump said on Saturday he condemns "all types of racism and acts of violence", appealing for unity ahead of the anniversary of a deadly white nationalist rally in Charlottesville.

As Washington, D.C. braced for a white nationalists to descend upon the capital Sunday, Former Virginia governor Terry McAuliffe gave a grim recollection of violence perpetrated by the same group in Charlottesville just one year ago.

- Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) August 12, 2018 Exactly one year ago, Heather Heyer was murdered for daring to stand up to a group of white supremacists that came together in Charlottesville to protest America's greatest asset: our diversity.

"Our role is to make sure we have a First Amendment event that goes on without any types of violence or destruction of property", Newsham said, according to CNN affiliate WTOP. Trump blamed "both sides" for the violence in Charlottesville, drawing an equivalency between white supremacists and neo-Nazis with the people protesting them.

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Anti-fascist marchers have held peaceful demonstrations in Charlottesville, USA, to mark the first anniversary of the death of Heather Heyer, who was killed while protesting against an extreme right rally. Two Virginia State Police troopers also died that weekend when their helicopter, assisting with public safety, crashed during the rally.

Last year, 22-year-old Clara Carlson faced down the group of white supremacists who marched through campus, surrounding her and a group of friends.

"The riots in Charlottesville a year ago resulted in senseless death and division", Trump said Saturday on Twitter, without noting that most of the violence, including a auto ramming that killed counterprotester Heather Heyer and injured at least 20 others, was committed by neo-Nazi marchers. Police officers cleared a path through the counterprotesters for the group to march through on their way to Lafayette Park outside the White House.

Unite the Right 2 will take place Sunday afternoon in Lafayette Park in front of the White House and mark the one year anniversary of Charlottesville. Both sides clashed before police dispersed the crowds.

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Authorities came under harsh criticism for underestimating the potential for unrest at last year's rally.

Congressman Tom Garrett, R. -Va., on Saturday said Russian Federation is to blame for some of the hate spewed from last year's rally.

It was a dramatic shift in tone from past year, when he said there was "blame on both sides" for the violence that broke out when white nationalists descended on Charlottesville to protest the removal of Confederate statutes and marched through town shouting racist slurs. The declarations enable law enforcement to access state resources, including the National Guard, if unrest breaks out at events in and around Charlottesville and outside Washington, where a "Unite the Right 2" rally is scheduled. An extensive review identified "gaps" in planning and communication among agencies, culminating in this year's plan, Charlottesville Police Chief RaShall Brackney said.

Jason Kessler, the primary organizer of last summer's rally, sued the city of Charlottesville after it refused to issue him a permit for another event this weekend.

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"We are treating this as a statewide event", said Virginia Department of Emergency Management coordinator Jeff Stern.