At least four lives have been lost in the US Capitol in Washington as supporters of President Donald Trump stormed the building in anger over his election defeat. The Metropolitan Police Department said that one woman was shot and three others died due to "medical emergencies''.
At least 14 Police officers have also suffered injuries during the violence.
As the protestors stormed the building, in an attempt to halt the counting of the electoral votes, the police were outnumbered even as armed clashes took place. At least 52 rioters have been arrested on the US Capitol grounds.
The US Capitol Chaos
Protesters supporting Donald Trump thronged the US Capitol, as Vice President Mike Pence rebuked the president's demand to overturn his loss to Democrat Joe Biden.
Claiming that overturning the decision of the US electorate would lead to a "democratic death", Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell suggested Republicans not to oppose the will of the voters.
Addressing supporters on Wednesday, Trump had encouraged them to march to the US Capitol to pressure Congress to reverse the November 3 presidential election results. Soon after, hundreds of Trump supporters gathered between the Washington Monument and the National Mall.
Trump appealed to his supporters to "respect the men and women in blue", but only after the protesters had stormed the Capitol building in large numbers, India Today reported.
Attacking Pence, Trump said, "Mike Pence didn't have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our country and our Constitution, giving States a chance to certify a corrected set of facts, not the fraudulent or inaccurate ones which they were asked to previously certified. The USA demands the truth!"
Trump supporters overturned barricades and clashed with police on the US Capitol grounds. Washington DC police chief Robert Contee said that pro-Trump protesters used "chemical irritants" on police to break into the US Capitol. Visuals also showed Trump supporters storming the Senate chamber with one of them seen yelling "Trump won that election".
Washington DC Becomes Riot-Zone
Dozens of Trump supporters were seen violating the curfew ordered by Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser. Mayor Bowser said that the behaviour of Trump supporters is "shameful, unpatriotic and above all is unlawful".
The US National Guard was deployed to aid Capitol Police in reacquiring control of the Capitol building. The Capitol Police also used tear gas to disperse Trump supporters.
Meanwhile, Vice President Mike Pence reconvened the US Congress to certify President-elect Joe Biden's victory once the Capitol building was cleared of Trump supporters. Pence called for the violence to "stop now". Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell and House majority leader Nancy Pelosi issued a joint statement requesting President Trump to ask his supporters to vacate the Capitol building.
Senate minority leader Chuck Schumer called Trump supporters who stormed the Capitol building "domestic terrorists".
Addressing the country, President-elect Joe Biden said, "At this hour, our democracy is under unprecedented assault. Unlike anything, we have seen in modern times. An assault on the citadel of liberty, the Capitol itself."
Global Leaders Condemn US Capitol Clash
World leaders, including UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Canadian PM Justin Trudeau, condemned the attack on the US Capitol. "I am appalled by the reckless behaviour of some political leaders since the election and by the lack of respect shown today for our institutions, our traditions, and our law enforcement," former US President George W Bush said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi also expressed shock at the storming of the US Capitol in Washington. Calling the protests "unlawful", PM Modi said that the orderly and peaceful transfer of power must continue.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said, "In such circumstances, it is important that political leaders impress on their followers the need to refrain from violence, as well as to respect democratic processes and the rule of law."
Tech Giants' Crackdown On Trump's Claims
Twitter Inc and Facebook Inc on Wednesday, January 6, temporarily blocked the accounts of President Donald Trump as part of a major crackdown on his claims about the U.S. presidential elections.
Twitter removed three of Trump's tweets "as a result of the unprecedented and ongoing violent situation in Washington, D.C.," after pro-Trump protesters stormed the U.S. Capitol.