Joe Biden in inaugural address: ‘I will be the president of all Americans’

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Just two weeks ago, a right-wing mob stormed the US Capitol. In the same place, Joe Biden has now been sworn in as the 46th president. The leitmotif of his speech: “Unity is the way forward.”
Joe Biden has taken office as the 46th president of the United States with a call for unity and reconciliation. The 78-year-old took the oath of office Wednesday in a solemn ceremony outside the U.S. Capitol in the nation’s capital, Washington.

“I will be a president for all Americans,” Biden promised. He said he would fight as much for those who did not support him as for those who did. “This is a day of democracy.” What is being celebrated, he said, is not the victory of one candidate, but the victory of democracy.

“With unity, we can do great things, important things,” Biden said. “This is our moment in history. And unity is the way forward.” Biden implored Americans the country has also overcome challenges in the past with unity. “Let’s start anew,” he said, calling for listening to one another.

Biden’s inauguration at the U.S. Capitol took place amid unprecedented security. Two weeks ago, violent supporters of President-elect Trump had stormed the Statehouse. Fears of further violence around the swearing-in were therefore high.

The center of Washington was cordoned off over a wide area. In addition to numerous police officers, thousands of National Guard members were deployed to protect the congressional seat in particular. Because of the Corona pandemic, the inauguration also took place without the usual mass audience. Instead of the hundreds of thousands of people, a sea of flags was placed on the open space between the Capitol and the Lincoln Memorial.

  • hector pascua, with reports from news agencies. Picture: screenshot:orf, Zeit im Bild, 20.01.2021
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