A large police presence is on hand to provide a barrier between ultra-nationalists and anti-racism demonstrators at Melbourne's St Kilda beach.
Race Discrimination Commissioner Chin Tan says there's no place in Australia for the "apparent racist" rally organised by members of the far right in Melbourne on Saturday.
Police descended on St Kilda beach in Melbourne to separate nationalists from anti-racism demonstrators.
The 'Political Meeting at St Kilda Beach' was organised by Neil Erikson, a controversial far-right activist who last year approached former Labor Senator Sam Dastyari in a pub and called him a "terrorist" and a "monkey".
"I condemn in the strongest possible terms the apparent racist and race-based motivation behind the rally. There is no place for such rallies in Australia," he said in a statement.
"Activities that target a community based on their race or ethnicity are unacceptable and have no place in a cohesive, multicultural Australia."
Numerous videos posted to social media appear to show demonstrators hurling abuse at each other, while police detain and remove individuals who appear to make hand gestures to the opposing demonstrators.
Some protesters were seen making gestures similar to Nazi-style salutes.
Supporters of the rally include convicted criminal and leader of anti-immigration protest group United Patriots Front, Blair Cottrell.
An 18-year-old man was arrested on the beach after being found with a "dangerous article" about 12.20pm, police said.
"The Sunbury man was interviewed and will be charged on summons with possessing a dangerous article. He was given a direction by police to move away," Victoria Police said in a statement.
"Victoria Police respects people's right to protest peacefully, but will not tolerate those who break the law."
Queensland Senator Anning, who now sits as an independent after being booted from the Katter Australia Party following his defection from Pauline Hanson's One Nation, uploaded several videos to his Facebook page from the rally.
In the videos, Senator Anning, who used the Nazi-associated phrase "final solution" in his maiden speech, stands with Mr Cottrell, poses for photos and makes inflammatory remarks about migration.
"I'm here representing a lot of people from Queensland who wish they could be here," Senator Anning said in one video.
The far-right group chanted "Aussie, Aussie, Aussie, oi, oi, oi" while the counter protesters yelled "Migrants welcome, racists are not".
Mr Erikson thanked Senator Anning, and criticised Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews.
"The Andrews government is so weak it's not funny," Erikson told reporters. "And the Police Commissioner and his or her offsider are a joke."
The nationalist rally was met by hundreds of anti-racism protesters.
Spokesperson from the Campaign Against Racism and Fascism (CARF) group Tess Dimos on Saturday morning told SBS News that the group wanted to ensure that "fascists can't mobilise a rally of supporters, or incite racist mob violence, without people coming out en mass to oppose them".
"Our message that people have come out in solidarity with the African community which has been the target of racial abuse and harassment, that we won't stand by while fascists and racists parade along our beaches, and making it clear their gathering and the individuals organising it aren't just random 'concerned citizens' but are neo-Nazis and violent thugs," she said.
"We expect a very large police presence. However, if the fascists and their supporters can freely move around we want to try and have a tight crowd of people to block their access to the main crowds on the beach or into the centre of St Kilda shopping areas."
Victoria Police earlier promised a strict no tolerance approach to anyone making trouble.
"The safety of the Victorian community is the highest priority for Victoria Police and there will be a strong police presence at the rally in order to main public safety," a Victoria Police spokesperson said in a statement on Friday.
Last year, Mr Erikson and three others were found guilty of inciting serious contempt of Muslims after staging a mock beheading to protest against the building of a mosque in central Victoria.
Mr Erkison insisted in a Facebook post that Saturday's demonstration would be "peaceful".
Mr Cottrell tweeted he would be attending the rally "to protest a media and government establishment that forces mass immigration onto us".
Police say all rally participants will be closely monitored to ensure peace is maintained.
"Victoria Police respects people's right to protest peacefully, but will not tolerate those who break the law.
"Anyone coming to the event looking to cause trouble can expect a firm response from police; you will be arrested and held to account if you commit a crime."
Earlier this week, Victoria's Police Minister Lisa Neville was forced to issue a warning against individuals trying to "incite violence" following an incident at St Kilda beach.
The violent clash occurred after Mr Erkison filmed a group of Australian people of African heritage playing football at the popular Melbourne location.
"I don't care who it is, whoever is inciting or inflicting violence on communities and causing fear, our police will be there," said Mr Neville.
Additional reporting by AAP.