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John Kirby ‘not aware’ of any violent threats related to Trump’s call for protest

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National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said Sunday there are no indications the White House is preparing for violent protests by Donald Trump supporters after the former president said he expects to be arrested this week.

Trump called for protests in a social media post Saturday, claiming that “illegal leaks” from the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office have led him to believe he will be arrested.

Kirby addressed the situation during an appearance on “Fox News Sunday,” saying he wasn’t aware of any potential violence related to the former president’s call for protests.

“We’re always monitoring the situation here as best we can,” Kirby said. “And we obviously don’t want to see any activity grow violent, certainly nothing to the extent that we saw on January 6, but we’re watching this. We’ll watch it of course, closely. 

National Security Council spokesman John Kirby speaks during a press briefing at the White House, March 2, 2023.

National Security Council spokesman John Kirby speaks during a press briefing at the White House, March 2, 2023. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci))

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“We want to see if there are protests of any kind about any issue or quite frankly, let alone this, that they’re peaceful,” he added.

Asked whether he was worried about security, Kirby responded: “I’m not aware of any indications that we’re preparing for that kind of activity, specifically, with respect to those comments. But obviously, we work hand in glove with local and state authorities all around the country, and we’ll continue to watch this as best we can.”

The Manhattan District Attorney’s Office is reportedly preparing to issue an indictment for alleged hush money payments that Trump made as a presidential candidate in 2016.

Former President Donald Trump greets supporters during a visit to East Palestine, Ohio, following the Feb. 3 Norfolk Southern freight train derailment, on Feb. 22, 2023.

Former President Donald Trump greets supporters during a visit to East Palestine, Ohio, following the Feb. 3 Norfolk Southern freight train derailment, on Feb. 22, 2023. (Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images)

Former President Donald Trump speaks at the East Palestine Fire Department in East Palestine, Ohio, on Feb. 22, 2023.

Former President Donald Trump speaks at the East Palestine Fire Department in East Palestine, Ohio, on Feb. 22, 2023. (Rebecca Droke/AFP via Getty Images)

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Trump said on his Truth Social site Saturday morning that he expected to be arrested on Tuesday, writing in part, “PROTEST, TAKE OUR NATION BACK!” 

Critics accused Trump of inciting violence and compared his call to action to the U.S. Capitol riot on Jan. 6, 2021, when a mob of his supporters stormed the Capitol building and temporarily halted the certification of President Biden’s election victory.

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