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World Leaders Deplore Pro-Trump Extremists Breaching U.S. Capitol

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and other foreign leaders condemned the violence in the U.S., which they decried as a threat to democracy.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and other foreign leaders condemned the violence in the U.S., which they decried as a threat to democracy.

Updated at 7:08 p.m. ET

World leaders condemned pro-Trump extremists' storming of the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday as members of Congress attempted to accept the Electoral College ballots for President-elect Joe Biden.

"Disgraceful scenes in U.S. Congress," Prime Minister Boris Johnson of Britain tweeted. "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."

German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas warned President Trump to accept the results of the U.S. election, saying, "Insurgent words turn into violent acts."

"The enemies of democracy will be delighted at these terrible images from Washington DC," he tweeted. "Trump and his supporters must accept the decision of American voters at last and stop trampling on democracy."

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he was monitoring the situation closely and with concern.

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

"These are not 'protestors' — this a direct attack on democracy and legislators carrying out the will of the American people," British Labour Party leader Keir Starmer tweeted, calling the scenes "horrendous."

Dmytro Kuleba, Ukraine's minister for foreign affairs, called for the situation to be quickly resolved for the good of the U.S. and other democratic countries.

"While people in Palestine & in many other places in the world are struggling to achieve democracy, there are those in the US who are actively sabotaging theirs," Palestinian official Hanan Ashrawi tweeted. "Despots everywhere thrive on repression, oppression, & violence."

Israeli opposition leader Yair Lapid tweeted he was "deeply saddened and shocked" at the events.

"We hope to see order restored and the transition of power completed," he wrote. "America needs to go back to being a role model for democracies across the world."

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg wrote that the "outcome of this democratic election must be respected."

Senior Turkish officials offered reactions that were described as "peak trolling" on social media.

The speaker of the Turkish Parliament, Mustafa Sentop, tweeted that in Turkey "we have always been in favor of the law and democracy and we recommend it to everyone."

The comment was seen as ironic, coming from a senior member of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's ruling party. In May 2017, members of Erdogan's security detail made headlines when they attacked demonstrators protesting Erdogan's invitation to the White House to meet Trump.

A presidential spokesman said Turkey was "following developments in the US with concern," while the foreign ministry warned Turkish citizens in the U.S. to avoid crowds.

Irish lawmaker Brendan Howlin referred to the events as"the inevitable final phase of Trumpism."

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Reese Oxner