Bracing for violence: Major protests planned in D.C. on 1-year anniversary of Charlottesville
WASHINGTON, D.C. — The nation’s capital is bracing for a white nationalist rally that law enforcement agencies will try to prevent from turning violent, like the one in Charlottesville, Virginia last summer.
This weekend marks the anniversary of the Charlottesville protests. Sunday, an estimated 400 demonstrators will gather at Lafayette Square, adjacent to the White House, for a “Unite the Right 2” rally. More than 1,500 counterprotesters are expected to gather there as well.
Last August, white supremacist demonstrators and counterprotesters squared off in violent clashes in Charlottesville. Heather Heyer, 32, was killed in that conflict, when a man whose social media accounts espoused his support of white supremacy, drove his car into a crowd of counterprotesters.
Meantime, the city of Charlottesville is under a state of emergency this weekend, with streets closed to cars and all pedestrians forced through just two security checkpoints. Police fear a repeat of last year’s protests and ensuing violence.
The white nationalist who organized last year’s rally is behind the one happening in D.C. Sunday, touting “white civil rights.”
The five counterprotest groups are planning a series of rallies called “United to Love.”
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