The gathering has been deemed an "unlawful assembly" by the city, and riot police are present on the scene.
A state of emergency has been declared in Charlottesville, Virginia in advance of Saturday's "Unite The Right" rally in the city.
Governor McAuliffe has declared a state of emergency to aid state response to violence at Alt-Right rally in Charlottesville— Terry McAuliffe (@GovernorVA) August 12, 2017
Police declaring an unlawful assembly at Emancipation Park, ordering people to leave or risk arrest. Hardcore alt-right holding position. pic.twitter.com/HvMe9xoLT5— Joel Gunter (@joelmgunter) August 12, 2017
White nationalists and other extremist right wing groups clashed with counter-protesters Saturday morning with "fist fights and screaming matches" taking place, according to CNN. This follows an incident Friday night in which white nationalists marched through University of Virgina chanting phrases like "white lives matter" and "you will not replace us" while holding torches. Mayor Mike Signer called the march "a cowardly parade of hatred, bigotry, racism, and intolerance."
Charlottesville has since declared Saturday's gathering an "unlawful assembly." Police are said to be present at Emancipation Park, where the "Unite The Right" rally is set to take place, dressed in full riot gear.
White nationalists have been drawn to Charlottesville due to the city's decisions to remove symbols of Confederacy from public property, including a statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee. The decision was made following the 2015 killings of nine black men and women at a church in Charleston by Dylann Roof, a self-described white supremacist.
Read some responses to the white nationalist rally from Twitter below.
These are the faces of white supremacy, and they should be shared. It's a public protest. If they wanted privacy should've worn their hoods. pic.twitter.com/bDBu362Qun— Matt McDermott (@mattmfm) August 12, 2017
Imagine if these people ever faced actual oppression. pic.twitter.com/dhPCbtfEjO— Large Adult Goat (@JuliusGoat) August 12, 2017
Man, I still can't seem to figure out what Colin Kaepernick is protesting about pic.twitter.com/R4Wg9tUlVY— EdgeOfSportsPOD (@EdgeOfSportsPOD) August 12, 2017