Priti Patel says Donald Trump ‘directly’ incited Capitol violence after squirming interview

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A senior British politician has admitted Donald Trump ‘directly’ incited the Capitol riots in a rare condemnation of the sitting President.

At first the “tough-on-crime” Home Secretary Priti Patel stopped short of directly condemning the President this morning – despite him telling a violent mob who stormed the Senate chamber “we love you”.

In an interview with Sky News, she was asked four times if she would condemn Mr Trump. But in a second interview 15 minutes later, Ms Patel then went further and said Mr Trump’s comments were “completely wrong”.

She called for an "orderly transition of power" and told BBC Breakfast: “The level of language and rhetoric, clearly comments have really helped to fuel the violence.”

Asked to confirm she was talking about Donald Trump, she replied: “Well, his comments directly led to the violence, and so far he’s failed to condemn that violence, and that is completely wrong."

A Home Office source later pointed out Ms Patel had been one of the first government ministers to name Donald Trump last night as the violence unfolded.

Priti Patel said of Donald Trump: "His comments directly led to the violence"

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She tweeted last night: “Unacceptable and undemocratic scenes in Washington DC. There is no justification for this violence and Donald Trump must condemn it.

“The United States is a beacon of democracy, hope and liberty and there must now be an orderly transition of power.”

This morning she added: “Let’s be very clear in terms of the scenes – what we’ve seen in Washington and the display of the violence. He has not – you know, he basically has made a number of comments yesterday that helped to fuel that violence and you know, he didn’t actually do anything to, you know, de-escalate that whatsoever.”

Four people are dead after pro-Trump rioters overwhelmed police and stormed the Capitol building while Congress was certifying Joe Biden ’s election victory.

The President then inflamed tensions when he posted a video message urging the mob to leave – but failing to condemn them, calling them “very special” and saying he knew how they felt.

Capitol police officers point their guns at a door that was vandalized in the House Chamber
(Image: Getty Images)

He also repeated his baseless claims that the election had been stolen from him.

Twitter and Facebook both suspended Trump’s accounts, with Twitter saying the video could incite violence.

Trump’s actions were condemned around the world – and disowned by his own Vice President Mike Pence.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson stopped short of mentioning or condemning Trump but tweeted: “Disgraceful scenes in U.S. Congress.

“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.”

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Pro-Trump activists were described as 'domestic terrorists'
(Image: Getty Images)

Ms Patel was earlier asked four times by Sky News if she would condemn the US President.

The first time she said: “I think I think absolutely the violence you know should stop, and he should he should absolutely condemn everything that has taken place.

“There’s no question about that at all. Someone was shot, people have died. This is terrible, terrible beyond words quite frankly and there is no justification for it.”

Donald Trump egged on the supporters, despite losing a democratic election
(Image: MICHAEL REYNOLDS/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock)

The second time she said: “I think first of all he made a statement yesterday and it did very little to de-escalate the situation, so there is no question, first of all, there’s no justification, you know, words of provocation are completely wrong, and quite frankly every aspect of the violence and the activities that took place should be condemned, that is absolutely right.

“And you know, quite frankly, we’ve seen, you know, we’ve heard from the President-elect, we’ve seen just shattering, absolutely shattering pictures coming out from Washington and as I said, America is a beacon of democracy and freedom and quite frankly it’s right now that they move on, they get on with an orderly transition, and that violence, there’s no justification for it whatsoever, it has to stop.”

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The rioters stormed the citadel of US democracy
(Image: JIM LO SCALZO/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock)

Asked if she agreed Trump was America’s “worst President” she replied: “Well look, it’s, I’m, you know, we’re not going to, I’m not going to get into you know comments of that nature.

“The fact of the matter is there’s been no justification for what has happened at all.

“And that violence is completely unacceptable and on that basis alone, people have died, and, you know, there is, transition in America, at the end of elections have always been smooth, you know, the world looks to America for peaceful transitions and it’s important now they absolutely get on with that process of transition, moving their country forward.”

Trump supporters storm the Capitol in scenes liked to an 'insurrection'
(Image: REUTERS)

Asked one last time if she condemned Donald Trump she said: “I have said he should absolutely condemn the situation, condemn the violence, but his words also did very little to de-escalate the situation yesterday.

“You know, so, quite frankly, what we have seen is absolutely appalling, there’s no justification for it whatsoever, I mean, you’ve seen, all your viewers have absolutely seen the most appalling and shocking scenes at the heart of democracy in the USA, and that violence should be condemned, it should be condemned by Donald Trump as well absolutely, but at the same time right now, you know, America has to move on, you know they’ve had their election, and they’ve had their process, they’ve had their process, and quite frankly they do now need to move on.

“But what we have seen is absolutely appalling and terrible, there’s no justification for it whatsoever.”

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