Police and neo-Nazis have clashed on the steps of Victoria’s Parliament House ahead of a planned “peaceful” anti-immigration rally in Melbourne.
Video of the conflict has emerged on Twitter, showing items being hurled during the confrontation in Melbourne.
Members of Melbourne’s National Socialist Network had planned the rally from midday on Saturday.
“We are organising in opposition to the system’s importation of 715,000 immigrants … further exasperating the housing crisis and ethnic replacement of white Australians,” a flyer for the event reads.
“This will be a peaceful and legal demonstration.”
Prior to the clash with police, members could be seen unfurling a banner reading “living space for whites: stop immigration”.
Trigger warning; Nazi pic.twitter.com/uFaSCLCjc6
— Alex Grey. (@AlexGrey156) May 13, 2023
Pro and anti immigration protesters gather in Spring st in Melbourne. Picture: NCA NewsWire / David Crosling
In response, Victoria Police declared the CBD a “designated area” from 7am to 7pm, granting police stop and search powers.
“Police officers and protective services officers are empowered to search a person and any thing in the possession or control of the person, or a vehicle for weapons,” Victoria Police said in a statement.
“A police officer may also exercise their power under the Act to request you to remove any article covering your face or direct you to leave the designated area if you refuse to remove the face covering, or if the police officer reasonably believes that you intend to engage in conduct that would constitute an affray under s. 195H, Crimes Act 1958 or violent disorder under s. 1951, Crimes Act 1958.”
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – NewsWire Photos, MAY 13, 2023. Pro and anti immigration protesters gather in Spring st in Melbourne. Picture: NCA NewsWire / David Crosling
A counter-protest has been organised by the Campaign Against Racism and Fascism group.
“Tiny rump of fascists NSN have called a despicable, racist, anti-immigration event of their own. We’ll be mobilising to counter them,” the group posted online on Friday.
“Stand with us! Stop Nazis in their tracks.”
More to come.
Read related topics:ImmigrationMelbourne