In an unprecedented attack on democracy, thousands of angry supporters of outgoing President Donald Trump stormed the US Capitol and clashed with police, resulting in multiple injuries and forcing a delay in the constitutional process to affirm Joe Biden's victory in the November presidential election.
The police, outnumbered by the protesters, had a tough time in managing the crowd, as hundreds of protesters made their way into the US Capitol, where members of the US Congress were going through the process of counting and certifying the Electoral College votes. Both the House and Senate and the entire Capitol were placed under a lockdown.
Members of the US Congress were asked to get hold of the gas masks under their seats as the police resorted to tear gas to disperse protestors.
Multiple officers have been injured with at least one transported to the hospital, CNN reported, citing multiple sources.
President Trump has called for his supporters to "remain peaceful".
"I am asking for everyone at the US Capitol to remain peaceful. No violence! Remember, WE are the Party of Law & Order – respect the Law and our great men and women in Blue. Thank you!" Trump said in a tweet.
"Please support our Capitol Police and Law Enforcement. They are truly on the side of our Country. Stay peaceful!" Trump said in another tweet.
President-elect Biden said he was shocked and sad to see the US "come to such a dark moment".
"At this hour, our democracy's under unprecedented assault. Unlike anything we've seen in modern times. An assault on the citadel of liberty, the Capitol itself. An assault on the people's representatives and the Capitol Hill police, sworn to protect them. And the public servants who work at the heart of our Republic... ," Biden said in an address to the nation.
"Let me be very clear. The scenes of chaos at the Capitol do not reflect a true America. Do not represent who we are. What we're seeing are a small number of extremists dedicated to lawlessness. This is not dissent. It's disorder. It's chaos. It borders on sedition. And it must end now," Biden said.