The mayhem unleashed by the supporters of outgoing United States (US) President Donald Trump on the US Capitol drew strong criticism, not only from within the country, but from abroad as well.
Democrats as well as Republicans blamed Trump for inciting the violence that left four people dead and disrupted Senate session for hours.
Former president George W Bush, condemning the riots, said: “This is how election results are disputed in a banana republic.” His statement described the storming of the US Capitol building as “sickening” and “heartbreaking.”
Though Bush did not mention President Trump by name, his statement clearly pointed to both Trump and other Republican officials. The former president said he was appalled by the reckless behavior shown by “some leaders by the lack of respect shown for our institutions, our traditions, and our law enforcement.”
Former president Bill Clinton termed the politics of Trump as “poison politics.” “The match was lit by Donald Trump and his most ardent enablers, including many in Congress, to overturn the results of an election he lost,” he said.
Former President Barack Obama called it “a moment of great dishonour and shame for our nation.” He said that Republicans have a choice to “continue down this road and keep stoking the raging fires, or choose reality and take the first steps toward extinguishing the flames.”
A former defense secretary under Presidnet Trump, Jim Mattis, said in his statement that the violent assault on Capitol which was “an effort to subjugate American democracy by mob rule, was fomented by Mr. Trump.”
Fellow party man Senator Mitt Romney, a former Republican presidential nominee, called it an “insurrection incited by the president of the United States.”
President-elect Joe Biden vehemently criticized Trump on live television and said the violence was “not a protest, it’s insurrection.”
Three White House aides, in the meanwhile, resigned after watching the violence and more were considering resigning before the end of Trump’s term.
Russian upper house’s foreign affairs committee chairman Konstantin Kosachyov said American democracy was “limping on both feet” after the storming of the Capitol by Donald Trump supporters. He said in a post on Facebook that the stunning events showed that Washington had “no right to lecture other countries on democracy.”
Kosachyov said: “The celebration of democracy has ended. It has, unfortunately, hit rock bottom, and I say this without a hint of gloating. America no longer charts the course and so has lost all right to set it. And, even more so, to impose it on others.”
Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani ridiculed the Western democracy by calling it “fragile.” In a televised speech, he said that the violence in Washington by Donald Trump’s supporters exposed the fragility of Western democracy. He said what the world saw in the US was that the ground was fertile for populism.
“A populist has arrived and he has led his country to disaster over these past four years,” he added. He expressed the hope that “the whole world and the next occupants of the White House will learn from it.”
German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas called violence in the US Capitol “a contempt for democracy.” “The enemies of democracy will rejoice at these inconceivable images from Washington DC,” he tweeted.
“Seditious words turn to violent actions — on the steps of the Reichstag, and now in the Capitol. Contempt for democratic institutions has devastating effects,” he added. “Trump and his supporters should finally accept the decision of the American voters and stop trampling democracy underfoot.”
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson felt the incident was a “disgrace,” and called for a peaceful and orderly transfer of power.
French President Emmanuel Macron, however, said he has confidence in the strength of democracy in the US. “What happened in Washington is not American,” Macron said in a video message posted on Twitter.
European Union leaders, Ursula von der Leyen and Charles Michel, also condemned the unrest in the US Capitol on Twitter.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau tweeted that his country was “deeply disturbed and saddened” by the violence in Washington. He said that violence never succeed in overruling the will of the people.