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A supporter of US President Donald Trump carries a Confederate flag in the US Capitol Rotunda in Washington, DC, January 6, 2021. (Saul Loeb/AFP)
Saul Loeb, AFP: A supporter of US President Donald Trump carries a Confederate flag in the US Capitol Rotunda in Washington, DC, January 6, 2021

‘All-out assault’: The pictures and videos that show mayhem unfold at US Capitol

Images, some broadcast by rioters themselves, capture the chaos in Washington as intruders stormed police lines, looted, mocked elected officials

Main image by Saul Loeb, AFP: A supporter of US President Donald Trump carries a Confederate flag in the US Capitol Rotunda in Washington, DC, January 6, 2021

Mayhem unfolded at the US Capitol on Wednesday as rioters incited by President Donald Trump smashed their way into the building, ransacked its offices and mocked its leaders.

Lawmakers set to confirm US President-elect Joe Biden’s electoral victory hid under tables, donned gas masks and hunkered in lockdowns as the mob of hundreds pounded at the doors and forced their way inside to roam the building’s halls.

Security officers trained their guns on the intruders from inside the House Chamber. A woman was shot and killed by police, and three others died in apparent medical emergencies. The graceful Rotunda reeked of tear gas.

An American flag was removed from the Capitol’s facade and replaced with a banner for Trump. At least one rioter carried a Confederate flag through the hallowed halls of US Democracy for the first time in the country’s history.

Trump equivocated on the sidelines, telling the insurrectionists “We love you” as he asked them to leave, after lighting fire to the mob at an earlier rally.

The US Capitol police force was accused of a stunning failure of its duty, especially as photos and videos emerged of officers allowing rioters past their line and posing for selfies with the intruders.

Much of the carnage played out in real-time online as rioters, bystanders, journalists and lawmakers posted photos, videos and written testimony on social networks amid the chaos.

The footage of MAGA-hatted intruders marauding through the building was viewed online in the US and abroad with astonishment, fear, anger, and in some corners of internet, delight.

Biden branded the rioters “domestic terrorists” and said the tumult was “not dissent, was not disorder, was not protest. It was chaos.”

“Don’t dare call them protesters. They were a riotous mob — insurrectionists, domestic terrorists. It’s that basic,” Biden said, placing blame squarely on Trump.

“He unleashed an all-out assault on our institutions of our democracy from the outset. And yesterday was the culmination of that unrelenting attack,” Biden said.

Violent protesters, loyal to US President Donald Trump, storm the Capitol, January 6, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
People are seen in the House gallery wearing protective hoods as protesters try to break into the House Chamber at the US Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Police with guns drawn watch as protesters try to break into the House Chamber at the US Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Pro-Trump rioters try to break through a police barrier at the US Capitol in Washington, January 6, 2021. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)
Police hold back supporters of US President Donald Trump as they gather outside the US Capitol’s Rotunda on January 6, 2021, in Washington, DC.
(Olivier Douliery/AFP)
Trump supporters try to break through a police barrier, January 6, 2021, at the AS Capitol in Washington. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
People march with those who claim they are members of the Proud Boys as they attend a rally in Washington, January 6, 2021, in support of President Donald Trump. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)
Supporters of US President Donald Trump enter the US Capitol’s Rotunda on January 6, 2021, in Washington, DC. (Saul Loeb/AFP)
Supporters of US President Donald Trump enter the US Capitol, in Washington, DC, on January 6, 2021. (Saul LOEB / AFP)
Richard Barnett, a supporter of US President Donald Trump, sits inside the office of US Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi inside the US Capitol in Washington, DC, January 6, 2021. (Saul Loeb/AFP)
Smoke fills the walkway outside the Senate Chamber as supporters of US President Donald Trump are confronted by US Capitol Police officers inside the Capitol, January 6, 2021 in Washington. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)
Damage is visible in the hallways in the early morning hours of Thursday, Jan. 7, 2021, after protesters stormed the Capitol in Washington, on Wednesday. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
District of Columbia National Guard stand outside the Capitol, Jan. 6, 2021, after a day of rioting protesters (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Security forces respond with tear gas after US President Donald Trump’s supporters breached the US Capitol security in Washington DC on January 6, 2021. (Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
After violent protesters loyal to President Donald Trump stormed the US Capitol, a tactical team with ATF gathers in the Rotunda to provide security for the continuation of the joint session of the House and Senate to count the Electoral College votes cast in November’s election, at the Capitol in Washington, Jan. 6, 2021. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
A supporter of US President Donald Trump leaves a note in the office of US Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi inside the US Capitol in Washington, DC, January 6, 2021. Demonstrators breached security and entered the Capitol as Congress debated the 2020 presidential election Electoral Vote Certification. (SAUL LOEB / AFP)
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