The National Socialist Network (NSN) and the Socialist Alternative (SAlt) in Melbourne engaged in a shoutoff on Spring Street this morning.
Yesterday the NSN announced a snap stop immigration rally for 12pm at Victoria’s Parliament House.
In response the Campaign Against Racism and Fascism (CARF) a SAlt front group announced a snap counter-protest with the slogan: Stop Nazis, Not Immigration scheduled at 11.30am before the NSN rally was to start.
Both groups arrived early around 10am. The Parliament steps had been blockaded with the around 20 NSN members who had gathered there were pepper sprayed by Victoria Police and then pushed to the North of Spring Street opposite the Princess Theatre. This was clearly done so the NSN could not give the Nazi salute on the steps as they had during the Let Women Speak rally back in March.
CARF and other various SAlt groups were pushed back towards Little Bourke where a police line with officers on horseback kept them back. There were around 300 of them gathered.
The NSN said their protest was again the Albanese Government’s planned resuming of mass migration with 650,000 projected to come to Australia over the next two years which they view as an encroachment on the living space of whites. One of their chants was ‘for whites’.
CARF claimed the NSN were emboldened to protest because in Opposition Leader Peter Dutton’s budget reply speech he asked where all these new migrants are going to be housed. Their main chant was ‘migrants/refugees are welcome Nazis are not’.
From 11.30am when CARF began their speeches NSN shouted over while periodically giving the Nazi salute. Thomas Sewell claimed that Jewish billionaires are behind mass migration.
At 12pm when the NSN rally had originally been scheduled to begin Victoria Police over a megaphone gave them a move-on order as the CBD was declared a designated area from 7am to 7pm. This gives police the power to search anyone and request face coverings be removed.
The NSN then left marched south through Spring Street on the opposite side of the Parliament giving the Nazi salute. Victoria Police then formed a blockade just past the intersection of Spring and Bourke Street as the NSN disappeared into the day. Some of the SAlt and CARF activists who attempted to follow them were pepper sprayed by police who made two arrests.
As well as the mainstream media Rukshan Fernando and Avi Yemini were present to cover both sides. Avi was seen interviewing Tom Sewell the main face of the NSN but we he attempted to interview someone from SAlt or CARF he was attacked.
The Andrews Labor Government is promising to introduce legislation to ban the Nazi salute in an effort to curtail NSN and other neo-Nazi activism. The Nazi swastika is already banned in Victoria.