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‘Disgraceful’: World leaders react to pro-Trump riots rocking Washington

A man calls on people to raid the building as Trump supporters clash with police and security forces as they try to storm the Capital Building in Washington D.C on January 6, 2021.

Joseph Prezioso | AFP | Getty Images

WASHINGTON – Foreign leaders and diplomats issued unusually stark statements condemning the pro-Trump riots that broke out in Washington and forced the U.S. Congress to recess from the joint session that was scheduled to formally announce President-elect Joe Biden’s victory in November’s election.

President Donald Trump, during a rally earlier outside the White House, had encouraged thousands of his supporters to march to the Capitol and protest the proceedings there. Trump returned to the White House after his speech and later told supporters in a tweeted video “you have to go home now.”

“This was a fraudulent election … but you have to go home,” Trump said, telling protesters “We love you. You are very special,” before signing off.

The scenes of crowds storming into the U.S. Capitol shocked foreign powers around the world.

An explosion caused by a police munition is seen while supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump gather in front of the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, U.S., January 6, 2021.

Leah Millis | Reutes

Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Boris Johnson described the unfolding protest in Washington as “disgraceful.”

“The United States stands for democracy around the world and it is now vital that there should be a peaceful and orderly transfer of power,” Johnson wrote in a tweet.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau also expressed concern about the violent scenes and said he was following the situation “minute by minute.”

“I think the American democratic institutions are strong, and hopefully everything will return to normal shortly,” Trudeau told the News 1130 Vancouver radio station.

Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez wrote that he was following the updates from Washington and that he was hopeful a Biden administration would be able to unite Americans.

David-Maria Sassoli, the president of the European Parliament, the lawmaking party of the European Union, wrote that the scenes from the U.S. Capitol were “deeply concerning.”

“Democratic votes must be respected. We are certain the U.S. will ensure that the rules of democracy are protected,” added Sassoli.

Joseph Borrell Fontelles, the European Union’s High Representative of the Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, wrote in a pair of tweets that “American democracy tonight appears under siege.”

“This is an unseen assault on U.S. democracy, its institutions and the rule of law. This is not America,” he added.

World leaders, like the Prime Minister of the Netherlands, called on Trump to recognize the incoming Biden administration in order to help quell protests.

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg called the protest “shocking.”

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