US Capitol police with guns drawn stand near a barricaded door as members of a mob try to break into the House Chamber in Washington.

Top of The World

The world reacts to chaotic rampage at the US Capitol; China calls out US on 'hypocrisy'; Biden victory confirmed by Congress

In the hours after pro-Trump extremists stormed the US Capitol building on Wednesday, world leaders condemned the chaos and violence that erupted as Trump loyalists attempted to overturn Nov. 3 US presidential election results won by Joe Biden.

US Capitol police with guns drawn stand near a barricaded door as members of a mob try to break into the House Chamber in Washington.

Credit:

Andrew Harnik/AP

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Glass shattered. Confederate flags and flags bearing US President Donald Trump’s name waved. Two pipe bombs were planted. At least one person was shot and killed and three others died around the Capitol grounds, suffering separate medical emergencies.

The world watched in shock as marauders rampaged Capitol Hill live on TV and social media. In the hours after pro-Trump extremists stormed the US Capitol building on Wednesday, world leaders condemned the chaos and violence that erupted as Trump loyalists attempted to overturn Nov. 3 US presidential election results won by Joe Biden.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson was one of the first world leaders to react, calling the events a “disgrace” and urging a “peaceful and orderly transfer of power.”

In a tweet, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said that “insurgent words turn into violent acts” and urged Trump and his supporters to “stop trampling on democracy.”

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg called the rampage in Washington “shocking” and insisted on respect for election outcomes.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he was “deeply disturbed,”  but underscored his belief in the strength of American democracy.

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said she and others in her country were “devastated” by the events: 

Turkey issued a statment urging the United States to use "moderation" and "common sense" to restore order: 

And in Latin America, Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza denounced America’s political polarization and Argentine President Alberto Fernández tweeted his nation’s “strongest support for President-elect Joe Biden.” Colombian Presiden Iván Duque also rejected the violence and expressed his solidarity in a tweet: 

Zimbabwean President Emmerson Mnangagwa questioned the US' moral authority to issue sanctions under the "guise of upholding democracy" after yesterday's siege: 

What the world is following

Zimbabwe wasn't the only nation to call out the United States on its hypocrisy. The attack on the US Capitol comes just one day after Hong Kong’s largest crackdown on more than 50 pro-democracy lawmakers, calling into question the US’ ability to uphold democratic values around the world and hold authoritarian leaders to account.

In China, state media as well as online commentators called “hypocrisy” on the US for its response to the US siege, drawing comparisons with the 2019 anti-government protests in Hong Kong in opposition to a controversial extradition bill. The peaceful movement ended with protesters storming and defacing Hong Kong’s legislature in July 2020, which US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi had called “a beautiful sight.” Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying urged the US to question its double standard.

Yet, Chunying still tweeted:

Hours after police secured the Capitol building complex, lawmakers returned from hiding on Wednesday night and proceeded to count the Electoral College votes that confirmed Joe Biden as the 46th president of the United States. After inciting violence earlier in the day, President Donald Trump later promised a peaceful and “orderly transition of power” while continuing to disagree with the results.

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“Within a time period of two to three months, we’ll be able to vaccinate the entire population that can be vaccinated,” Israeli Health Minister Yuli Edelstein.

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Bright spot

Perhaps on a morning when many around the world are waking up concerned, confused and maybe feeling some sense of sorrow, here's a project that offers an idea of relief. Based on an art installation in Japan, an old phone affixed to the back of a western red cedar in the state of Washington is offering hikers a chance to make a call and offer words to the wind.

In case you missed it 

Listen: US on edge during transition of power

The peaceful transition of power is a democratic principle that for the most part hasn't been challenged here in the US. But this year, after this election, many Americans are nervous as angry supporters of President Donald Trump stormed the US Capitol on Wednesday. And, in contrast to other vaccination programs, in Israel, health officials have been vaccinating about 1.5% of the population every day. Also, a valuable painting by Wassily Kandinsky is in a major museum in Amsterdam. It once belonged to a Jewish family before World War II. Now the heirs are suing to get it back.

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