WASHINGTON, , (Pakistan Point News - APP - 21st Jan, 2017 ) - Masked, black-clad protesters carrying anarchist flags smashed windows, lit fires and scuffled with riot police Friday in downtown Washington, blocks from the parade in honor of newly sworn-in President Donald Trump. Washington police arrested at least 217 people for acts of vandalism committed on the fringe of peaceful citywide demonstrations against Trump's inauguration. Just before the parade started, clashes broke out between 400 to 500 stone-throwing protesters and riot police, who responded with tear gas -- the second violent flare-up in the space of a few hours.
As Trump's motorcade wound its way up Pennsylvania Avenue in the parade to the White House, protesters just a few blocks away set a parked limousine on fire after smashing its windows. An AFP reporter saw National Guardsmen donning helmets and bullet-proof vests, as protesters blocked traffic and set trash cans ablaze -- chanting "Not my president" and "We resist President Trump." City police chief Peter Newsham said at least 217 people were arrested and would be held overnight before appearing in front of a judge. "The charge is rioting," he told reporters.