U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson has condemned Donald Trump’s encouragement for the “disgraceful” behaviour of his supporters, who stormed the U.S. Capitol building Wednesday.
The comments, at a Downing Street press conference, marked a significant departure for the prime minister, who has so far stopped short of condemning the president personally. Johnson also attacked Trump for “consistently” casting doubt on the U.S. election result.
He told reporters: “All my life, America has stood for some very important things, an idea of freedom and an idea of democracy and … in so far as he encouraged people to storm the Capitol, and in so far as the president consistently has cast doubt on the outcome of a free and fair election, I believe that that was completely wrong.”
Trump has continued to push unsubstantiated claims that he won last year’s U.S. election. But Johnson, whose government faced claims it had been slow to condemn Trump’s initial cry of electoral fraud, added: “I think what President Trump has been saying about that has been completely wrong. And I unreservedly condemn encouraging people to behave in the disgraceful way that they did in the Capitol.”
Johnson joins a growing chorus of senior U.K. Conservatives who have broken with Trump since the riots in the Capitol on Wednesday. On Thursday, German Chancellor Angela Merkel hit out at the U.S. President, telling a virtual event: “A basic rule of democracy is: After elections, there are winners and losers. Both have to play their roles with decency and a sense of responsibility, so that democracy itself remains the winner.”
Trump acknowledged for the first time Thursday that he will leave office in an “orderly transition” later this month, although he maintained that the election had been fraudulent.
Boris Johnson blasts ‘completely wrong’ Trump over US Capitol riots The British Journal Editors and Wire Services/ Politico.