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President Trump Issues Statement Ahead of Deadly Charlottesville Anniversary

12 August 2018

The Virginia State Police has deployed hundreds of troopers to Charlottesville for the August 12 weekend in order to prepare for potential violence.

"We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry and violence on many sides, on many sides", Trump said, following the events.

Trump's comments were met with a firestorm of criticism on "both sides" of the aisle.

Washington police chief Peter Newsham said firearms will be prohibited at the rallies, even for gun owners with legal licenses.

"We love all people and our country", he said from the stage.

Bowser said she recently spoke with an elderly Washington, D.C., resident who told her she was afraid.

The city tweeted just before 2:30 p.m. that two arrests had been made so far Saturday.

The city says each man was released on a misdemeanor summons.

State police patrol the road in front of Market Street park with the state of Confederate General Robert E. Lee as they lock down the downtown area of Charlottesville.

Tight security measures are in place for the anniversary of last summer's violence. A group raised a banner that said: "Last year they came w/ torches".

Local and state authorities framed the weekend's heightened security as a necessary precaution.

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In the popular downtown shopping district Saturday morning, law enforcement officers outnumbered visitors.

The organizer of last year's event, white nationalist Jason Kessler, was denied a permit in Charlottesville this year but has secured permission to hold a demonstration on Sunday in Washington, across the street from the White House. Majuto claimed that the police "were not on our side" previous year when white supremacists confronted counterprotesters.

Some community activists were concerned that this year's heavy police presence could be a counterproductive overreaction.

Sunday's rally comes less than three months before midterm elections to determine whether Republicans maintain their majority in Congress. Democrats and independents are defending 25 seats in the Senate, compared to eight for Republicans, and need to win an additional net 23 seats to take over the House of Representatives. "This year they come with badges".

Carlson said police didn't intervene to help her or her friends that night past year. "This is not making anyone that I know feel safe".

Unite the Right leaders said they are using Sunday's rally in the nation's capital as an opportunity to stand up for their civil rights. "We hope the anniversary of those events passes peacefully".

On the eve of last year's rally, torch-toting white supremacists marched through the University of Virginia's campus, shouting racist and anti-Semitic slogans.

The group then continued marching, with some members carrying a sign that said, "Good night white pride".

The most intense moments occurred in the evening at the University of Virginia campus at the "Rally for Justice", where a group of some 200 Antifa activists shouted at riot police lines, "Black Lives Matter!" and "No Nazis, No KKK, No Fascist USA!".

Heather Heyer, 32, was killed at last year's rally after James Alex Fields Jr. struck her with his vehicle. Two state troopers also died that day in a helicopter crash near Charlottesville.

President Trump Issues Statement Ahead of Deadly Charlottesville Anniversary