US & Canada

Charlottesville far-right rally organiser plans Washington DC event

Jason Kessler attempting to give a press conference in Charlottesville Virginia August 2017 Image copyright Reuters
Image caption Jason Kessler organised the 2017 "Unite the Right" rally in Charlottesville, Virginia

The organiser of last year's Unite the Right march that turned deadly in the US town of Charlottesville is planning to hold another event in Washington DC.

Jason Kessler's application for a two-day "white civil rights rally" has received initial approval for 11-12 August by the National Park Service.

However the permit for the event has not yet been issued.

The far-right blogger's filing estimates 400 people will attend, and says he will work with law enforcement.

The Washington DC event is planned to take place at Lafayette Park next to the White House exactly one year after the rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.

The march in Charlottesville drew international attention after it erupted into violent clashes and a woman was killed while many others were injured when a car ploughed through a crowd of counter-demonstrators.

The man accused of ramming the vehicle into the anti-fascism protesters is facing a possible life sentence on charges including first-degree murder.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Demonstrators clashed in Charlottesville, Virginia

US President Donald Trump controversially said both sides were to blame for the violence at the rally in Charlottesville.

Following the event, Mr Trump told reporters he condemned "in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry, and violence - on many sides".

It followed months of protests concerning the planned removal of a statue of a general who had fought for the pro-slavery Confederacy during the US Civil War.

An application to hold another event in Charlottesville this year was rejected because of public safety concerns, according to local media.

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Media captionFootage captured the moment a car rammed into a crowd of counter-protesters in Charlottesville

Mr Kessler said previously that the Virginia rally was not meant to cause violence and blamed the counter-protesters for the fighting.

He also blamed the police for failing to protect his group on the day, during a press conference which he eventually had to flee.

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