Leaders around the world condemned the storming of the US Capitol by supporters of Donald Trump, the US president, on Wednesday, expressing shock at the chaos unfolding in a country they once relied upon for global leadership.
“Disgraceful scenes in US Congress,” tweeted Boris Johnson, the Prime Minister, who Mr Trump once branded “Britain Trump”.
“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.”
Dominic Raab, the Foreign Secretary, added in his own tweet: “The US rightly takes great pride in its democracy, and there can be no justification for these violent attempts to frustrate the lawful and proper transition of power.”
Other European allies were similarly appalled at what they described as an attack on American democracy. Some singled out Trump for harsh criticism.
“Trump and his supporters should finally accept the decision of the American voters and stop trampling on democracy,” German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas wrote on Twitter.
He said that “from inflammatory words come violent deeds” and added that “contempt for democratic institutions has disastrous effects.”
“Horrible images from Washington D.C. Dear @realDonaldTrump, recognise @JoeBiden as the next president today,” Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said on Twitter.
The plain-speaking Mr Rutte once during a visit to the White House in 2018 interrupted Trump with a loud ‘no’ when Trump made an assertion about EU-US trade.
Irish premier Micheal Martin, who has invited the Irish-American Biden to visit his ancestral homeland early in his presidency, tweeted his condemnation.
“The Irish people have a deep connection with the United States of America, built up over many generations. I know that many, like me, will be watching the scenes unfolding in Washington DC with great concern and dismay,” Martin said.
Irish foreign minister Simon Coveney went further in directly rebuking Trump.
“Shocking & deeply sad scenes in Washington DC – we must call this out for what it is: a deliberate assault on Democracy by a sitting President & his supporters, attempting to overturn a free & fair election!” he tweeted.
“The world is watching! We hope for restoration of calm.”
European Parliament President David Sassoli, who leads one of the largest legislatures in the world, also denounced the scenes at the Capitol.
The European Union has spent four cantankerous years dealing with the Trump administration, and its top officials have repeatedly said they were looking forward to a better relationship under President-elect Joe Biden.
“This is insurrection. Nothing less. In Washington,” tweeted Carl Bildt, a former prime minister of Sweden.
Venezuela – frequently singled out for its undemocratic political process – also chipped in over the ongoing incident, with its foreign minister Jorge Arreaza issuing a statement expressing “concern over the violence in Washington”.
Turkey, a Nato ally that has sometimes been at odds with Washington, expressed concern over the scenes of angry Trump supporters surging into the Capitol in an attempt to thwart the certification of Biden as the new president. The chaos forced lawmakers to be rushed from the building.
A Turkish Foreign Ministry statement urged all parties in the United States to use “moderation and common sense.”
“We believe that the United States will overcome this domestic political crisis with maturity,” the ministry said.
“Shocking scenes in Washington, DC,” Nato chief Jens Stoltenberg tweeted.
“The outcome of this democratic election must be respected,” he said.
Trump issued a restrained call for peace well after the melee was underway but did not urge supporters to disperse.