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World leaders condemn violence in US, urge peaceful transition of power

Macron of France and Modi of India both called for democracy to prevail and a peaceful transfer of power

Beijing, China | XINHUA | Government officials and leaders of international organizations have expressed shock at violent protests in the U.S. Capitol to support outgoing President Donald Trump, urging an immediate stop of violence, and a peaceful and lawful transfer of power.

United Nation Secretary-General Antonio Guterres was saddened by Wednesday’s violence and chaos in Washington as U.S. Congress was counting elector votes for last year’s presidential election, said his spokesman Stephane Dujarric.

“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,” said Dujarric in a note to correspondents.

Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission, called for a peaceful transition of power in the United States on Wednesday night, as violence erupted at the U.S. Congress during a massive protest against the results of the 2020 presidential election.

“Peaceful transition of power is at the core,” the executive chief of the European Union said on Twitter. “Joe Biden won the election.”

Von der Leyen joined forces with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson who denounced the “disgraceful scenes” in Washington in a tweet and called for “a peaceful and orderly transfer of power.”

British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab, in a tweet, also called for a lawful transition of power in the United States, adding “there can be no justification for these violent attempts to frustrate the lawful and proper transition of power.”

Meanwhile, British Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak tweeted that “the peaceful transition of power is just as important as the vote itself” in any democracy, stressing there is no excuse for the deplorable scenes coming from the U.S. Capitol.

Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said on Wednesday night he was concerned about the violence at the U.S. Capitol, adding that he had faith that the incoming president would help to restore calm.

“The new presidency of @JoeBiden will overcome the stage of tension, uniting the American people,” Sanchez wrote on Twitter in both Spanish and English.

Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz also expressed shock at the scenes in Washington. “This is an unacceptable assault on democracy. A peaceful and orderly transfer of power must be ensured,” he tweeted.

Portuguese Prime Minister Antonio Costa voiced concerns on Wednesday evening over the situation on the U.S. Capitol Hill, stressing that the outcome of the U.S. presidential elections must be respected.

“I am following developments in Washington with concern. Disturbing scenes. The outcome of the elections must be respected, with a peaceful and orderly transfer of power,” he said in his tweet.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi also condemned the violence on the U.S. Capitol, adding that the transfer of power from incumbent President Donald Trump to President-elect Joe Biden should take place in an orderly and peaceful manner.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison called the scenes at the U.S. Congress “very distressing.”

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said on Twitter that Trump and his supporters should finally accept the decision of the American voters and stop trampling democracy.

Igor Zorcic, speaker of National Assembly in Slovenia, said on Twitter that the events in Washington are a shameful attack on democracy, urging the handover of power to a democratically elected president as soon as possible.

The U.S. Capitol was breached by protesters on Wednesday afternoon, a tense situation that forced proceedings to count Electoral College votes cast in the presidential election to halt.

Lawmakers were evacuated from the House and the Senate, as protesters supporting Trump, a Republican, forced their way into the building, which has been placed under a lockdown.

Confrontations between law enforcement officers and the protesters have caused injuries from both sides. A woman who was shot on the Capitol grounds has died, according to police.



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