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इंडियन आवाज़     25 Jan 2021 09:12:11      انڈین آواز

Washington Beefs Up Security Ahead of Presidential Inauguration

WEB DESK

Soon after the US Congress voted to impeach President Donald Trump for a second time on Wednesday, there are reports of security being beefed up in the capital Washington and other cities.

Thousands more National Guard troops are coming in the national capital to help keep the peace during next week’s transfer of power.

“I think you can expect to see somewhere upwards of beyond 20,000 members of the National Guard that will be here,” Robert Contee, acting chief of the Metropolitan Police Department of the District of Columbia, told reporters Wednesday.

Defense officials confirmed the increased authorization, which came just days after the National Guard said it was sending up to 15,000 troops to the city to help with security ahead of the January 20 inauguration of President-elect Joe Biden, who defeated Trump in November’s election.

Officials said 10,000 guardsmen — part-time soldiers who can be deployed overseas but who are often called upon to help with emergencies in their home states — are expected to be on duty in Washington by Friday. The rest will arrive soon afterward.

More than 6,000 National Guard troops have been on duty in Washington and at the Capitol itself since pro-Trump extremists stormed the building last Wednesday.

In a statement issued Monday, General Daniel Hokanson, chief of the National Guard Bureau, said the Guard’s role was to “support security, logistics, liaison and communication missions.” But since late Tuesday, National Guard forces working at the Capitol have also been carrying weapons.

“This was requested by federal authorities and authorized by the Secretary of the Army,” the D.C. National Guard said in a statement. “The public’s safety is our top priority.”

Trump statement

In an attempt to calm tensions, the White House on Wednesday issued a statement from Trump, calling on those planning to protest in Washington to abide by the law.

“In light of reports of more demonstrations, I urge that there must be NO violence, NO lawbreaking and NO vandalism of any kind,” Trump said. “That is not what I stand for, and it is not what America stands for.”

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