Pres. Trump Sends Single Tweet Condemning Racism On Charlottesville Anniversary

Guns banned from `Unite the Right' rally in D.C. amid fears of violent clashes

President Donald Trump on Saturday was critical of racism in a tweet acknowledging the anniversary of a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va., that turned deadly a year ago.

The counter-protests in Washington have renewed the debate over whether small demonstrations of racist extremists should be ignored, or greeted with forceful public opposition.

Saturday's march capped a day of hope, grief, anger and remembrance in Charlottesville, one year after the "Unite the Right" rally brought racially charged street violence to the scenic college town.

Several dozen demonstrators from the so-called "antifa", or anti-fascist, movement marched to the spot where Heather Heyer was killed a year ago when a man linked to white supremacist groups rammed his vehicle into counter-protestors.

In his Saturday tweet, Mr. Trump did not specifically call out white nationalists, but referred generally to "riots" in Charlottesville that "resulted in senseless death and division".

'I condemn all types of racism and acts of violence.

President Trump is urging "peace to all Americans" as cities across the USA are bracing for Unite the Right 2018 marches this weekend.

Virginia Senator Mark Warner, (D), said that Trump shares responsibility for the violence in Charlottesville. Trump wrote on Twitter.

"We must show that what sets us apart as citizens of this country are our values of respect, openness, and tolerance towards one another".

States of emergency were declared on Wednesday for the Commonwealth of Virginia and Charlottesville.

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Police cars, SUVs and buses poured into downtown Charlottesville Friday, setting up a security area around the Downtown Mall. Soon after though, he said that while there were bad people in the white supremacist group, "you also had people that were very fine people, on both sides".

The man, John Miska, who was wearing a handgun in a shoulder holster, visited a drugstore and purchased razor blades, which qualified as contraband under the city's emergency declaration. Several counter protests and rallies also have been planned for Sunday.

The security area encompasses the Emancipation Park where alt-right groups rallied one year ago in an attempt to preserve the controversial Robert E. Lee statue there.

Counterprotesters are expected to include members of antifa, an anti-fascist group, some of whose members rampaged through parts of the District on Inauguration Day employing "black bloc" tactics of breaking windows and setting fires.

In August 2017, white supremacist demonstrators and counterprotesters squared off in violent clashes in Charlottesville, site of the University of Virginia.

In the immediate aftermath, Trump drew broad criticism when he initially appeared to establish a moral equivalence between the two groups of protesters and refused to criticize the extreme rightwingers.

It was a dramatic shift in tone from past year, when he said there was "blame on both sides" for the violence that broke out when white nationalists descended on Charlottesville to protest the removal of Confederate statutes and marched through town shouting racist slurs. Carlson, 22, said she feared for her life when she and a group of her friends were surrounded by the phalanx of young white men at the statue.

Later, he again blamed "both sides". Another book accuses him of being a "racist, bigot and misogynist" who calls blacks "niggers" and routinely denigrates women. He denies the allegations. "We don't see no riot here", activists chanted Saturday evening.

More: 'It's right there in front of the White House': Is D.C. ready for Unite the Right?

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