‘Hope it burns’ protestor to speak at rally
As protests sparked by the death of George Floyd continue to sweep across the US, demonstrations are also taking place in Australia.
Multiple protests have already been held in major cities across the country, with thousands of people gathering to protest police brutality and show support for indigenous Australians.
Major protests are set to take place this weekend across the country, with tens of thousands of people expected to join together.
But within hours of the rallies taking place, controversial comments once made by one of the Melbourne organisers have been unearthed.
According to the Herald Sun, Tarneen Onus-Williams, from The Warriors of Aboriginal Resistance group, once said "F**k Australia, hope it burns to the ground" during an "Invasion Day" protest in 2018.
Ms Onus-Williams and fellow organisers of today's protest have vowed to push ahead despite criticism of the planned action.
Here are some of the events being held in capital cities over the coming days:
A vigil will be held on Saturday for George Floyd and David Dungay, a 26-year-old Aboriginal man who died in Long Bay prison in 2015 while being held down by five guards.
Both Floyd and Dungay repeatedly said "I can't breathe" before their deaths.
More than 9600 people have confirmed they would be attending the Stop All Black Deaths in Custody rally and vigil, which has been organised by The Indigenous Social Justice Association (ISJA), the Anticolonial Asian Alliance and the USYD Autonomous Collective Against Racism.
"Police brutality is not an insular event - it is a result of a system that wants to actively fragment First Nations and Black communities in order to dampen the voices of dissent and keep its power," the Facebook page for the event reads.
"We cannot sit idly by while these injustices happen, nor can we rely on the government to hold themselves accountable - this is why we fight for justice.
"Justice for David Dungay Jr, justice for George Floyd, and justice for all those who came before them."
The event will start at Town Hall at 3pm, with attendees then marching to Bathurst St and Castlereagh St and ending at Belmore Park where the vigil will be held.
A Stop Black Deaths in Custody rally will be held outside Melbourne's Parliament House at 2pm on Saturday.
More 18,000 people are expected to attend the event, which is being organised by Warriors of the Aboriginal Resistance (WAR).
"The rally is to call for Australia to Stop Black Deaths in custody and to stand in solidarity with George Floyd and the Minneapolis freedom fighters for Black lives," a description of the event reads.
Organisers have urged everyone who plans to attend to follow important COVID-19 precautions including maintaining social distancing, wearing masks, using hand sanitiser and staying home if you become unwell.
Victoria Police have announced it isn't feasible to arrest or fine people for breaking COVID-19 rules at the event.
Premier Daniel Andrews says that doesn't mean the restrictions shouldn't be followed, saying "they're there to keep people safe".
"I'm not going to the protest. I would suggest to other people they shouldn't go to the protest either," he told reporters on Thursday.
"I understand the depth of feeling on this issue, but I might make the point this way - enough people have been hurt.
"Let's not do anything on the weekend that compromises safety, let's not do anything on the weekend that potentially spreads the virus."
More than 7600 people are expected to turn up to a protest being held on Saturday in King George Square.
The Black Lives Matter - Stop Black Deaths In Custody event will start at 1pm and is being organised by Warriors of the Aboriginal Resistance (WAR).
"We call on everyone to join us to fight back! Let us come together to fight in solidarity with the uprisings in the US around the world, in solidarity with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People, in solidarity with all the people who have been oppressed, and exploited, and brutalised by the system and let us fight for a better world," the event description reads.
"The extrajudicial public execution of George Floyd was a lit match to the fuel that has built up over centuries of racist violence at the hands of the capitalist state. We want justice, we want change!"
Thousands of people are expected to turn up to a rally being held in Adelaide's Victoria Square at 12pm on Saturday.
Almost 4000 people have said they would be attending the Solidarity with Minneapolis event, which is being organised by Sosblakaustralia SA Action Group and Adelaide Campaign Against Racism and Fascism.
The organisers have urged people to join the event to "rally in solidarity with those fighting for justice in the USA".
"We are also rallying in protest of police violence, racism, and the murder of black people in this country, and in solidarity with the Aboriginal liberation struggle," the event description reads.
"We ask all attendees to wear masks and will be enforcing social distancing at the rally."
Around 4000 people are expect to converge on Perth's Hyde Park next Saturday to "raise awareness toward the 432 deaths of indigenous Australians in police custody".
The Black Lives Matter protest will kick off at midday, with organisers urging people to adhere to social distancing measures.
"We are banding together to unite in amplifying the voice of the First Nations People," the event description reads.
"We want to prevent the death's of incarcerated indigenous Australians in the future. We want the recommendations from the 1987 Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody implemented. This glaring injustice has gone on far too long."
A protest is expected to be held tomorrow morning Garema Place in Canberra to "show solidarity with the George Floyd protest in the USA and protest the institutionalised racism that indigenous people face here in Australia."
More than 2000 people said they would attend the Black Lives Matter event, which will kick off at 10.30am, with protesters marching to Parliament House.
"It is as important as ever to protest the injustice faced by people of colour in Australia and around the world. Let's stand with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and tell the world enough is enough," the event description reads.
Originally published as 'Hope it burns': Shock protest comments