Two American cities are in turmoil, with large numbers of pro-Trump protesters invading the Capitol building earlier today in Washington D.C., and also gathering at the Atlanta Capitol in Georgia.
Since Democrats narrowly won both the remaining seats in the US Senate in Georgia overnight, Joe Biden’s party will now have the balance of power in both the House of Representatives and the Senate.
This result was still being finalised as armed rioters stormed the US Capitol in Washington D.C., following calls from President Donald Trump to come to the city to protest the results of the election and the formalisation of the electoral college vote.
One woman has been shot (she has since died), with pepper spray being used by both sides and tear gas also being deployed, along with flash grenades. The FBI said two suspected explosive devices had been rendered safe.
President-elect Joe Biden has condemned the violence as ‘an insurrection’ bordering on ‘sedition’.
President Trump belatedly made a video address (since removed from Twitter, Facebook and YouTube) in which he repeated baseless claims of election fraud and told protesters to go home, while also saying ‘we love you’.
His Twitter account has been suspended for 12 hours for posting false accusations, with the threat of permanent suspension in case of future violations.
Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani earlier described the protesters as being ‘on the right side of history’.
Vice-President Mike Pence, who had to be rushed to safety from the chamber, has said those responsible for the violence ‘will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law’.
Law enforcement authorities, including the National Guard, are now enforcing a curfew in Washington. The last time the Capitol was broken into was 1814, when British soldiers stormed the building.