16:04 GMT +321 September 2019
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    A white nationalist demonstrator with a helmet and shield walks into Lee Park in Charlottesville, Va., Saturday, Aug. 12, 2017. Hundreds of people chanted, threw punches, hurled water bottles and unleashed chemical sprays on each other Saturday after violence erupted at a white nationalist rally in Virginia.

    Officials Deny Permit for White Nationalist Event on Anniversary of Deadly Rally

    © AP Photo / Steve Helber
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    On Monday, officials from Charlottesville, Virginia, denied a permit request submitted by far-right organizer Jason Kessler, who wanted to host another Unite the Right rally on the one-year anniversary of his deadly August event.

    According to a three-paragraph decision signed by Maurice Jones, the Charlottesville city manager, officials concluded that the event would endanger public safety and that ultimately, the city did not have the proper resources to prevent a clash between opposing parties.

    "The proposed demonstration or special event presents a danger to public safety and it cannot be accommodated within a reasonable allocation of city funds and/or police resources," the notice says, according to The Washington Post.

    "The applicant requests that police keep ‘opposing sides' separate and that police ‘leave' a ‘clear path into event without threat of violence,' but [the] city does not have the ability to determine or sort individuals according to what ‘side' they are on, and no reasonable allocation of city funds or resources can guarantee that event participants will be free of any ‘threat of violence,'" the notice continued..

    In response to the declaration, Kessler called the move "bogus" and that it "should be reversed in court."

    "We're going to be suing Charlottesville for this and many other civil rights violations starting early next year," the organizer wrote in an email to the Post, later adding that "the rally is still happening."

    When submitting the application in late November, Kessler stated that the 2018 event was aimed to memorialize "the sacrifices made by political dissidents" and "rally against civil rights abuses," according to The Hill.

    The city also turned down four permit requests submitted by Kessler's supporters and opponents for areas in and around the park that still houses the statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee.

    Though the August event was marked by violence from the beginning, as white nationalists and counter-protesters clashed over the removal of Confederate statues in the US, the rally took a deadly turn when James Fields, Jr. allegedly plowed his car into a group of protesters, killing Heather Heyer, a 32-year-old activist, and injuring 19 others.

    Two Virginia state troopers who were monitoring the event also died that day after their helicopter crashed.


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