Clash between Neo Nazis and Counter-Protesters in Melbourne CBD.

Clash between Neo Nazis and Counter-Protesters in Melbourne CBD.

Neo-Nazis and Anti-Fascist Counter-Protesters Clash in Melbourne

Over the weekend, a group of neo-Nazis clashed with anti-fascist counter-protesters on the steps of Victorian state parliament in Melbourne, Australia. The far-right group, dressed in black with masks covering their faces, staged an anti-immigration rally on Saturday morning. However, they were outnumbered by counter-protesters, some of whom hurled objects at the group after they performed Nazi salutes. Police intervened using capsicum spray and made a number of arrests.

The rally was roundly condemned by both national and state political figures, with federal Energy Minister Chris Bowen calling it “unspeakably un-Australian.” Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews had previously moved to outlaw performing Nazi salutes following a protest in March, but the change has not yet been legislated.

While many of the counter-protesters left to join a different rally in support of Palestine, the neo-Nazis were marched away from parliament by officers before dispersing.

Condemnation of Neo-Nazism

Federal Energy Minister Chris Bowen called the rally “pure and simple racism” and “pure and simple evil.” He continued to say that neo-Nazis were “political lunatics who have no place in modern Australia.” Victorian Opposition Leader John Pesutto, in a joint statement with deputy Liberal leader David Southwick, was similarly condemnatory. “The Victorian Liberals and Nationals condemn neo-Nazi thugs and their toxic bigotry and hate,” the statement said.

Australia has a proud history of an orderly immigration program where people from all backgrounds come together in shared liberal-democratic values. This sort of behavior is completely unacceptable and against the values of an inclusive, tolerant, and multicultural community.


The clash between neo-Nazis and anti-fascist counter-protesters in Melbourne highlights the ongoing issue of far-right extremism in Australia. While the rally was small and quickly dispersed by police, it is important for political leaders to continue to condemn this type of behavior and take action to prevent it from spreading further. As a multicultural society, Australia must continue to promote inclusivity and tolerance while rejecting hate and bigotry.


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