Hillary Clinton condemns white supremacist Charlottesville violence
Hillary Clinton has condemned the violence that broke out in Charlottesville following white supremacist marches at the weekend.
Clinton, who warned last year that Trump’s rhetoric was firing up the hatred of the alt-right, took to Twitter to call on the President to follow suit and also be strong in condemning the violence.
My heart is in Charlottesville today, and with everyone made to feel unsafe in their country.
— Hillary Clinton (@HillaryClinton) August 12, 2017
“My heart is in Charlottesville today, and with everyone made to feel unsafe in their country,” the Democrat wrote.
“But the incitement of hatred that got us here is as real and condemnable as the white supremacists in our streets.”
Clinton went on to write that the longer alt-right voices were given a platform, the more “corrosive” it would be to American values.
“Every minute we allow this to persist through tacit encouragement or inaction is a disgrace, & corrosive to our values.
“Now is the time for leaders to be strong in their words & deliberate in their actions.
“We will not step backward. If this is not who we are as Americans, let’s prove it,” she concluded.
Trump’s statement on Charlottesville has been criticised for pandering to the far-right groups who sparked the violence.
“We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry, and violence, on many sides. On many sides. It’s been going on for a long time in our country,” he told reporters.
On Twitter Trump expressed his condolences for the family of Heather Heyer, who was killed when a car rammed into a crowd of counter protesters.
He wrote: “Condolences to the family of the young woman killed today, and best regards to all of those injured, in Charlottesville, Virginia. So sad!”
A state of emergency was declared amid the violence at the rally.
Police began to arrest people after declaring the protest, which was held at Emancipation Park, unlawful.
White nationalists and other right-wing groups clashed with counter-protesters in the town.
More than 1000 police officers were deployed for the event which was officially meant to start at midday, but hundreds of people had turned up by morning.
The Southern Poverty Law Centre deemed the protest, which is believed to have attracted up to 6,000 people, as the “largest hate-gathering of its kind in decades in the United States”.
The far-right groups, who were protesting the removal of a statue of Confederate General Lee, who commanded the Confederate Army of North Virginia, also marched on the University of Vriginia on Friday.
Charlottesville Mayor Mike Signer released a statement referring to Friday’s rally as a “cowardly parade of hatred, bigotry, racism, and intolerance march down the lawns of the architect of our Bill of Rights.”