Two Arrested At 'March For Men' Rally
The protest was organised by anti-feminist activist Sydney Watson.
Two men have been arrested at a rally in Melbourne as men's rights activists were met with counter-protesters.
Organised by conservative political commentator self-proclaimed anti-feminist Sydney Watson, the March For Men protest took place in Federation Square on Saturday afternoon.
Police confirmed there were two arrests made at the event.
A 25-year-old man from Murrumbeena and a 33-year-old man from Ringwood were arrested for willful damage and riotous behavior respectively, though at this stage neither has been charged.
There was a strong police presence organised to patrol the protest, with more than 150 officers from the Critical Incident Response Team, mounted wing and regular uniformed police in attendance.
Victoria Police said officers searched more than 270 protesters throughout the afternoon and also found two men carrying knives.
Despite the arrests, the majority of people at the protest were well behaved, police said.
The March for Men event's Facebook page, which before the rally took place had over 700 people committed to attend and 2600 more interested, says the point of the march was "showing the men in our lives that they matter and their issues matter."
"From the school yard to the office, Australians have been repeatedly reminded how undesirable it is to be a man. After weeks of attacks from the media, from politicians and from interest groups - enough is definitely enough!" the page reads.
The page also said all were welcome to attend and the event was not attached to "any political side or movement."
A counter-protest to Watson's rally by the National Union of Students Women's Department and the Campaign Against Racism and Fascism was also organised to congregate in Federation Square to maintain a "counter-narrative" to the men's rights movement.
The Facebook event, titled 'Stand up for equality: March against Men's Rights Activists,' had almost 500 people listed to attend and another 1,300 interested.
"Globally Mens Rights Activists (MRAs) have operated as a gateway drug for the alt-right," the event's page reads.
"Their campaigns seek to enforce rigid gender norms, sexist stereotypes and violence toward women. In Australia new groups such as the Proud Boys have been established which celebrate rape and decry women's equality."
Sydney Watson, an avid Donald Trump supporter and former journalism student, provides regular commentary on feminism and political issues including immigration to her Youtube audience of more than 32,000 subscribers.