Last Updated: March 24, 2012 4:40pm
An expected ‘white pride’ rally outside London city hall drew a large crowd Saturday afternoon — but one marching under an anti-racism banner.
About 100 people from various activist groups, including Occupy London members, converged at 300 Dufferin Ave. in a kind of counter-protest to the pro-white event that had been planned.
“We’re here to say you’re not welcome in our community,” said one member of the group, whose face was bandana-clad and gave his name only as Jake.
Several police officers and city hall security were also present — though a conflict happened earlier, at about 3 p.m., when the much-smaller white pride group clashed with the anti-racist crowd near the intersection of York and Wellington streets.
Police say what they're calling a white pride group, heavily outnumbered, left the area, leaving their planned city hall protest in doubt.
The anti-racist group then marched through downtown streets, arriving at city hall at about 4 p.m. Police were keeping a close watch on the situation, said Const. D’arcy Bruce.
“Everybody’s sensitive giving the nature of what happened at Fanshawe” last weekend, he said. “We’re just monitoring it.”
It’s believed one person was arrested at the York-Wellington incident, though details were unclear.
Though the anti-racism group was clear in their message — two carried a banner reading ‘smash racism’ — their attire was clearly intimidating for some.
As the group, many with their faces covered by bandanas, marched toward city hall, three visible minorities at a bus stop outside city hall scurried across the street from them.
“We’re an anti-racism group,” one marcher shouted at the trio.
The leader of the Blood & Honour faction that organized this march claimed they would have 40 to 50 people participating.
Sounds like they didn't quite meet that target.