NASSAU, BAHAMAS — Minister of Foreign Affairs Darren Henfield said yesterday that the government hopes for an “amicable conclusion” following the violent and deadly riot at the United States Capitol.
On Wednesday, thousands of demonstrators in support of President Donald Trump marched to the US Capitol to decry the confirmation of President-elect Joe Biden.
Demonstrators pushed past police barricades, smashed windows and stormed the building, occupying the halls and chambers for hours.
“The US is a very seasoned democratic republic and they will work through their issues,” Henfield told Eyewitness News.
“…We’re very happy to see the process played out with the strength that the institutions of the United States and their Houses present.
“We hope to see an amicable conclusion to the whole matter.”
Lawmakers scrambled into hiding with gas masks as the massive swarm enveloped the building.
A woman was fatally shot inside the US Capitol after the mob breached the building, and three other demonstrators died during the melee.
A Capitol police officer who was injured after responding to riots died yesterday.
Authorities also discovered several pipe bombs near the Capitol.
Hours after the riot, lawmakers returned to chambers until the wee hours of the morning and confirmed Democrat Joe Biden as the presidential election winner.
In a series of tweets, the US Embassy Nassau noted that while the right of peaceful assembly is enshrined in the country’s constitution, “the right to peaceful protest should never be used as a cover for destruction and violence”.
“We watched with dismay the scenes of unrest from the US Capitol building, but today we are heartened by the words of support from allies and partners around the world who share our faith in the strength of our democracy,” the embassy said.
“We are grateful that law enforcement officers were able to restore order without resorting to brutality. And we are confident that America is better than what we saw yesterday.”
Progressive Liberal Party (PLP) Chairman Fred Mitchell has called on the government to condemn the violence in the United States.
“Consistent with the conduct and conventions of a free and democratic state, our government must be seen publicly to uphold the democratic norms, amongst them the rule of law and the peaceful transfer of power,” Mitchell said in a statement.
He compared the scenes at the US Capitol to the civil unrest in Venezuela in 2019 amidst challenges with their elections and criticized the government for taking the position it did.
“We invite the government of The Bahamas also to rethink its policy and realign itself to our traditional policy of non-interference in the internal affairs of another country,” Mitchell said.