Hours after a large contingent of white nationalist marched with torches in Charlottesville, Virginia, President Donald Trump took to Twitter to denounce the rally and plead for equality.
“We ALL must be united and condemn all that hate stands for,” Trump tweeted. “There is no place for this kind of violence in America. Let’s come together as one!”
The widespread organized rally is called “Unite the Right,” and hundreds from across the nation have flocked to the University of Virginia campus to protest a proposal that would remove a statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee from a local park. The protests were slated to happen all weekend, and police have been sent out in full force.
On Friday, the protests turned violent, with some activists throwing their lit torches at others while others gave Nazi-like salutes and shouted things such as: “White lives matter,” and “anti white.”
During one instance, a reporter caught large commotion and a fight appeared to break out within the group. Alex Rubinstein captured the video and posted it to Twitter, and claimed “chemicals” were dispersed after the fight.
Rubinstein’s video shows police handcuffing a man and as others try to take control of the situation.
Watch a video of the fight below:
“People are angry, they’re scared, they’re hurt, they’re confused,” Rev. Seth Wispelwey of the local United Church of Christ said to the New York Times. “White supremacists rallying in our town is an act of violence.”
On Friday evening, U.S. district Judge Glen Conrad said it was OK for the rally to take place in its original location after a preliminary injunction had been filed to move the rally to a bigger park for safety concerns.
Many of those protesting say the removal of the statue has caused great anger among supporters of the cause. The bronze sculpture was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1997 and has resulted in many differing opinions.
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