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VIDEO: White nationalists march through UVA with torches

Dozens of white nationalists marched through the University of Virginia campus on Friday night carrying torches as they chanted “You will not replace us.”

The demonstrators, who also yelled “blood and soil” — a phrase tied to Nazi ideology — made their way through the Charlottesville campus before encircling a group of counter-protesters gathered around a statue of Thomas Jefferson.

A fight broke out, and some of the white nationalists swung their tiki torches at people, according to the Daily Progress.

White supremacists marched through the University of Virginia Friday night

White supremacists marched through the University of Virginia Friday night

(Courtesy Andrew Shurtleff/The Daily Progress)

Members of both sides were reportedly hit with pepper spray, and several people were treated at the scene for minor injuries.

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Protesters wielding torches march through campus and chant "You will not replace us."

Protesters wielding torches march through campus and chant “You will not replace us.”

(Courtesy Andrew Shurtleff/The Daily Progress)

Police arrived on campus, declared it an unlawful assembly, and ordered the crowds to disperse. At least one person was arrested.

The event was a precursor to the Unite the Right rally scheduled for Saturday, when a number of far-right groups are expected to make a show of force in response to the city’s decision to remove a statue of Confederate Gen. Robert E. Lee from Emancipation Park.

Sharing a photo of the torch-bearing march on Friday, Unite the Right organizer Jason Kessler wrote on Twitter, “Incredible moment for white people who’ve had it up to here & aren’t going to take it anymore. Tomorrow we #UnitetheRight #Charlottesville.”

Prominent white nationalist Richard Spencer, who led a similar march in Charlottesville in May, was also at the rally on Friday night.

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Mayor Mike Signer released a statement denouncing the march.

“When I think of torches, I want to think of the Statue of Liberty,” he wrote.

NARCH/NARCH30 MNDTY

The demonstraters encircle a group of counter-protesters who had gathered around a statue of Thomas Jefferson.

(Alejandro Alvarez/News2Share via Reuters)

“When I think of candlelight, I want to think of prayer vigils. Today, in 2017, we are instead seeing a cowardly parade of hatred, bigotry, racism and intolerance march down the lawns of the architect of our Bill of Rights.

“I am beyond disgusted by this unsanctioned and despicable display of visual intimidation on a college campus.”

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Richard Spencer attended the rally, and the Unite the Right organizer Jason Kessler (not pictured) called Friday

Richard Spencer attended the rally, and the Unite the Right organizer Jason Kessler (not pictured) called Friday’s march a “incredible moment for white people”.

(Richard Spencer via Twitter)

The Unite the Right rally, which is expected to draw 2,000 to 6,000 people, could be the “largest white supremacist gathering in a decade,” according to the Anti-Defamation League.

Gov. Terry McAuliffe warned people to stay away from the event on Saturday, noting that Virginia State Police and the Virginia National Guard will be monitoring the situation.

"I am beyond disgusted by this unsanctioned and despicable display of visual intimidation on a college campus," said Charlottesville Mayor Mike Signer.

“I am beyond disgusted by this unsanctioned and despicable display of visual intimidation on a college campus,” said Charlottesville Mayor Mike Signer.

(Courtesy Andrew Shurtleff/The Daily Progress)

Kessler’s attorneys filed a lawsuit against Charlottesville on Thursday, claiming their attempts to relocate Saturday’s event to McIntire Park, due to safety considerations, violates his right to free speech.

He is represented by the Rutherford Institute and the American Civil Liberties Union of Virginia.

The counter-protesters were outnumbered before a fight broke out

The counter-protesters were outnumbered before a fight broke out

(Courtesy Andrew Shurtleff/The Daily Progress)

Tags:
virginia
university of virginia
racial injustice
nazis
terry mcauliffe
lawsuits

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