Australia anti-lockdown rallies: protesters violently clash with police in Melbourne

Police clashed violently against anti-lockdown protesters as hundreds marched through Melbourne streets on Saturday.
Social media footage showed protesters cheering and throwing objects at officers, as well as letting off flares and pepper-spraying police officers.

After premier Daniel Andrews announced that Victoria would be placed in a statewide lockdown, the Melbourne protest was held. Photograph: Dave Hewison/Speed Media/REX/Shutterstock

After Victoria's premier Daniel Andrews announced that a lockdown would be extended to the whole state, the Melbourne protests were held. On Saturday, the state saw 77 new cases.

To contain the protest lockdown, more than 700 Victorian police officers were added. Social media videos revealed that hundreds of people were present with flares and some were letting off flares.

People of all ages could be seen marching through the streets shouting for freedom, while police criticised them as selfish.

Victoria bans public gatherings because of the state's efforts to limit coronavirus cases.

Horseback police gathered to stop the march that appeared to begin in Russell Street and end at other groups.

Right now, Victoria is witness to some crazy scenes. Melbourne's anti-lockdown protests turned violent. Cops seen pepper spraying and tackling demonstrators in Melbourne.

demonstrators @abcnews Kevin Nguyen (@cog_ink) August 21, 2021

Protesters were hounded by police in Melbourne. Some officers used pepper spray to control the crowds. Most people didn't appear to have masks.

Police in Victoria stated earlier Saturday that they had issued six infringement warnings to people they believed were traveling to the protests.

Protesters light flares in Melbourne Photograph: Dave Hewison/Speed Media/REX/Shutterstock

Brisbane City Botanic Gardens was host to a crowd of thousands protesting the vaccine restrictions and lockdown.

Police in Sydney deployed over 1,500 additional officers and issued orders prohibiting Ubers and taxis from transporting passengers into the CBD. This was until Saturday at 3pm. Stations in the city centre were not permitted to be stopped by trains.

Individuals could face fines up to $100,000 for failing to comply with the notice.

Two men were captured on video near Victoria Park in Camperdown. The footage was posted by ABC journalist Josh Bavas to Twitter.

Stay tuned for more