Protesters clash at Parliament
Hundreds of anti-racism protesters chased National Front members from the grounds of Parliament on Saturday.
The National Front chose the land wars memorial day to march to the Beehive for its ‘‘flag day’’ protest, claiming it was promoting truth and diversity.
However, a counter-protest was organised to ‘‘stop their mobilisation’’.
Hundreds gathered for the Aukati Stop Racism rally and heard Green MPs Golriz Ghahraman and Marama Davidson speak just before the National Front arrived.
The rally organisers had been expecting a large number of people from the National Front but only small groups turned up to Parliament.
The MC announced that most of them were in a pub down the road, which he called ‘‘embarrassing’’.
About six National Front members made their way towards Parliament in pairs, at intervals.
However, each time they did not make it to the gate because the rally of protesters moved them towards Wellington’s railway station, where about 10 other members were waiting.
As they walked to the station, the rally surrounded them and chanted ‘‘refugees welcome, racists not’’.
One of the members asked the protesters how he could be racist if he was Ma¯ ori.
Another said the organisation was not racist and it was the members who voted Winston Peters into power.
A few scuffles started but police intervened, surrounding the National Front members to escort them away.
After the event Ghahraman tweeted: ‘‘Together we stood strong against hate and division.’’
Earlier, her speech about her experience as an Iranian refugee and not being Kiwi enough roused applause.
‘‘I want to thank you all from the bottom of my Kiwi-Iranian refugee heart for being here today and standing with the people who are voiceless, who have been silenced.
‘‘Who have all of that internalised self hate that comes with knowing you live in a community where race supremacy still exists, where people do tell us we’re not Kiwi enough,’’ Ghahraman told the crowd.
Anti-racism protesters clash with Right Wing protesters at Parliament on Saturday.