US First Lady Melania Trump (Credit: Reuters Pictures)
US First Lady Melania Trump (Credit: Reuters Pictures)

Melania condemns Capitol riots, talks of 'gossip' against her but mum on Trump's role in inciting violence

ANI | Updated: Jan 12, 2021 01:07 IST

Washington [US], January 12 (ANI): US First Lady Melania Trump on Monday (local time) broke her silence on the attack on the Capitol and issued a statement condemning the violent riots at the Capitol on Wednesday, yet remained mum on the role of her husband President Donald Trump in inciting a mob of his supporters.
The first lady also said the attack on Capitol had led to "salacious gossip, unwarranted personal attacks and false misleading accusations" about her.
In a statement published on the White House website titled "Our Path Forward" Melania Trump said "It has been inspiring to witness firsthand what the people of our great nation will do for one another, especially when we are at our most vulnerable.
"... Most recently, my heart goes out to: air force veteran Ashli Babbit, Benjamin Philips, Kevin Greeson, Rosanne Boyland, and Capitol police officers Brian Sicknick and Howard Liebengood. I pray for their families comfort and strength during this difficult time" she wrote.
The first lady said she is "disappointed and disheartened with what happened last week.
Following the violence at the Capitol, two of the first lady's top aides, chief of staff Stephanie Grisham, who also served as Trump's closest adviser, speechwriter and spokesperson, and Anna Cristina "Rickie" Niceta, White House social secretary, submitted their resignations effective immediately in the wake of the violence.
CNN had reported that during the breach at the capitol, Melania was allegedly overseeing a photoshoot. "Photos were being taken of rugs and other items in the Executive Residence and the East Wing," a person familiar with the day's activities with the first lady told CNN.

In her statement on the White House website, Melania said: "I find it shameful that surrounding these tragic events there has been salacious gossip, unwarranted personal attacks and false misleading accusations on me - from people who are looking to be relevant and have an agenda.
"This time is solely about healing our country and its citizens. It should not be used for personal gain."
"Our Nation must heal in a civil manner. Make no mistake about it, I absolutely condemn the violence that has occurred on our Nation's Capitol. Violence is never acceptable," she said.
Melania further asked people to stop the violence, and never make assumptions based on the colour of a person's skin or use differing political ideologies as a basis for aggression and viciousness.
"It has been the honor of my lifetime to serve as your First Lady. I want to thank the millions of Americans who supported my husband and me over the past 4 years and shown the incredible impact of the American spirit. I am grateful to you all for letting me serve you on platforms which are dear to me," she added.
Chaotic and violent scenes erupted at the Capitol on Wednesday as supporters of Trump stormed the building to protest the Electoral College vote, forcing a lockdown and confrontations with the police. Five people died in the ensuing scuffle.
Wednesday's violence came hours after Trump encouraged his supporters to fight against the election results as Congress was certifying Biden's victory in the November vote.
On Monday, the US House of Representatives have introduced a resolution to impeach Trump for a second time, on charges on 'incitement of insurrection' during the riots. (ANI)