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Donald Trump inauguration: Watch moment billionaire becomes President and gains control of nuclear codes

Mr Trump vows to protect the US constitution watched by thousands in Washington DC

Lizzie Dearden
Friday 20 January 2017 18:06 GMT
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Trump takes oath to become 45th President

Donald Trump has been sworn in as the 45th President of the United States, becoming the country's Commander in Chief and gaining control of its nuclear codes.

The former reality television star and property magnate looked sombre as he took his oath on the bible that once belonged to Abraham Lincoln.

Barack and Michele Obama, Bill and Hillary Clinton and George W Bush were watching the ceremony alongside thousands of Trump supporters.

Mr Trump was sworn in after his Vice President Mike Pence, with readings from Christian leaders and musical performances.

The ceremony confirms his new role as President, as well as Commander in Chief of the US armed forces.

There has been international alarm over the prospect of Mr Trump being responsible for the world's second-largest arsenal of nuclear weapons.

He was given access to the “nuclear football” containing the codes at 12.01pm local time (5.01pm GMT), allowing him to order a nuclear attack at a moment's notice.

Last month, Mr Trump tweeted that the US "must greatly strengthen and expand its nuclear capability until such time as the world comes to its senses regarding nukes", as well as condemning the landmark Iran nuclear deal that aimed to ease global tensions.

The ceremony started little over an hour after masked protesters smashed windows and engaged in running battles with police.

A crowd of around 100 people were later cordoned off by officers who subdued vandals using tear gas, water cannon, pepper spray and stun grenades.

Numerous other protests spread through Washington DC ahead of the inauguration, including the Disrupt J 20 group, which attempted to block ticket holders from entering the inauguration venue.

Others offered thousands of free joints out to campaign for the legalisation of cannabis, while others demonstrated at the US Navy Memorial, att Meridian Hill Park and in McPherson Square.

Outgoing homeland security secretary Jeh Johnson said 28,000 officials were being deployed for the security operation in Washington, including more than 3,000 police officers and 5,000 members of the National Guard.

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