The National Guard was mobilized in Washington ahead of pro-Trump protests scheduled for this week as Congress gathers to certify election results.
The police chief said the guard would be used to control the crowd and manage traffic. Mayor Muriel Bowser called on the guard to act and asked residents and others to be safe and alert.
“We urge DC residents and residents of the region to avoid clashes with anyone seeking a fight,” Bowser said. “The best way to do that is to avoid that area.”
Congress convened on Wednesday to formally count the election college votes. President Donald Trump lost the election, but has been accused of fraud in an unsubstantiated manner. On Tuesday, Georgia will hold re-election, which will determine which party controls the Senate.
Organizers plan to march in Independence Plaza on Tuesday evening and in the Ellipse throughout Wednesday, marching to the Capitol until 1pm on Wednesday, the Associated Press reported.
Trump has promoted the rally, saying on Sunday “I will be there. Historic day!” When retweeting the news about the event scheduled for Wednesday.
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More than 300 Colombian district National Guard personnel will support the city government on Tuesday and Wednesday to control crowds at metro stations and help close the street, the police said in a statement.
Commanding General of the DC National Guard Major General William J. Walker said they will be in a supporting role.
Acting Metropolitan Police Chief Robert Condy warned protesters and anyone else that guns would not be allowed.
“We have received some information that individuals are intent on bringing guns into our city and that will not be tolerated,” Candy said.
In December, several people were stabbed during clashes surrounding a pro-Trump rally.
Enrique Tario, the leader of the Pride Boys, was arrested on Monday after entering Washington. He was accused of burning the Black Lives Matter identity. Police said he also had two high-capacity magazines.