National Mall (Credit: Reuters Pictures)
National Mall (Credit: Reuters Pictures)

National Mall to be closed on Biden's inauguration amid security concerns

ANI | Updated: Jan 14, 2021 23:21 IST

Washington [US], January 14 (ANI): The National Mall in the US will be closed to the general public on President-elect Joe Biden's Inauguration Day, according to an official familiar with the discussions, as security concerns loom large following the insurrection of the Capitol last week.
The official informed that there will be no big screens, no toilets, no panels where people stand, and that the public will not be able to get down to the mall during the day of Biden's inauguration, reported CNN.
Discussions are ongoing between the District, National Park Service and the US Department of Interior on when the shutdown will happen. There won't be any access on January 20, but when exactly before that is still the subject of discussion.
Biden's advisers, who are helping plan the inaugural, say it is intended to be a virtual event. They did not object to heightened security restrictions recommended by authorities pertaining to the Mall or the area surrounding the White House, according to CNN.
Meanwhile, The Hill reported concerns are growing over the security threats surrounding the occasion, following a violent attack on the Capitol building last week, which has shaken the country's confidence and put scrutiny on law enforcement and safety in Washington.

The impending threat has already led to a series of announcements, including federal and state officials beefing up security in the area. Thousands of National Guard troops are expected to be deployed in Washington DC in the coming days. Meanwhile, President Donald Trump has declared a state of emergency till January 24, and the Secret Service will begin special protections for the inaugural event on Wednesday, a week earlier than initially planned.
On January 6, during a rally at the Ellipse, just outside the White House, Trump said, "We're going to walk down to the Capitol and we're going to cheer on our brave Senators and Congressmen and women, and we're probably not going to be cheering so much for some of them."
Shortly after the speech, a group of Trump's loyalists stormed the US Capitol building, clashing with police, damaging property, seizing the inauguration stage and occupying the rotunda. Five people died in the clash.
The US House of Representatives on Wednesday impeached President Donald Trump for "inciting" the deadly violence at Capitol Hill.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi confirmed the impeachment making Trump the first US president to be impeached twice. Congress voted 232 to 197 on the single article of impeachment charging Trump with "incitement of insurrection". (ANI)