The warning has been issued following last week’s shocking scenes at the US Capitol in Washington D.C. when a mob of Trump supporters managed to force their way into the building while US lawmakers were certifying Biden’s victory.
Five people died in the riot, which has been condemned across the US and the world. Biden described the rioters as “domestic terrorists” in a speech given the following day.
While Trump has since admitted defeat in November’s US presidential election and claimed that there will be “a smooth, orderly and seamless transition of power” before Biden takes office, law enforcements officials in the US have reportedly been briefed on the possibility of armed protests taking place in all 50 state capitals and at the Capitol in D.C. ahead of the inauguration.
Both AP and ABC News cite an internal FBI bulletin which reportedly carries a warning that “armed protests” could begin across the US on Saturday (January 16), and that one group is calling for the “storming of state, local and federal government courthouses and administrative buildings” if Trump is removed from office before January 20.
“The FBI received information about an identified armed group intending to travel to Washington, DC on January 16,” the bulletin reads (via ABC News). “They have warned that if Congress attempts to remove POTUS via the 25th Amendment, a huge uprising will occur.”
Law enforcement sources told ABC News that police agencies have been advised to increase their security at statehouses across the US following last week’s events.
Over 10,000 National Guard troops are expected to be in Washington D.C. by the weekend, with 5000 more available if requested. Trump’s inauguration in 2017 saw around 8000 National Guard troops being deployed.
Yesterday (January 11) saw the House of Representatives charge Trump with “incitement of insurrection” following last week’s Capitol riot. House Democrats hope to hold a vote on impeachment tomorrow (January 13).