Members of the far-right group Proud Boys burned a Black Lives Matter banner while making white hand gestures of supremacy when violence broke out overnight in Washington DC on Saturday.
The video, posted on social media, shows at least two dozen white men – most of them wearing bulletproof vests – surrounding the flaming sign hours after thousands of Donald Trump supporters rallied “Stop The Steal” against the election results to have.
One member of the group threw a flammable substance on the fire, sending flames and thick black smoke into the night sky.
Under the words “Black Lives Matter” on the flag was the website of the Asbury United Methodist Church, a black-majority but mixed congregation that was founded in 1836 and is only a few blocks from the White House.
The Proud Boys group sang “F *** Antifa!” referring to radical left anti-fascism protesters with whom they clashed repeatedly this year during protests against racial justice following the killings of black Americans such as George Floyd and Breonna Taylor.
Some of the protesters also waved the “OK” hand gesture adopted by the far right to show a “sincere expression of white supremacy,” according to the Anti-Defamation League.
At the first presidential debate in September, Mr Trump refused to denounce the Proud Boys. Instead, he told them to “stand by and stand by,” comments that were later celebrated by the group’s leaders.
A series of violent clashes between Trump supporters and counter-protesters in DC broke out on Saturday following a march in support of the president’s false claims of electoral fraud.
Four people were reportedly stabbed to death in the capital, but none were in a life-threatening condition. One person was also shot dead during a Trump protest in Olympia, Washington. The person’s condition was not immediately clear.
Mr Trump continues to falsely claim that he won the election and tweeted on Saturday that his team “ONLY STARTED THE BATTLE !!!!”
The electoral college will meet on Monday to approve the election results for Mr Biden as the 46th president.
Mr Trump has suffered a number of legal defeats in his campaign lawsuits aimed at overturning results in key battlefield states by citing unsubstantiated allegations of election fraud.
While the transition process has begun, many Republican Party figures are rowing behind the defeated incumbent.
More than 120 members of the House of Representatives formally asked the Supreme Court earlier this week to prevent four swing states from declaring Mr Biden the winner. The Supreme Court rejected the election challenge.
Some Republican officials have urged Mr. Trump to tone down the rhetoric about his false election fraud claims.
Gabriel Sterling, one of Georgia’s leading electoral officials, urged the president earlier this month to “stop inspiring people to potential acts of violence”.
“Someone is getting hurt. Someone is shot. Someone is killed. And it’s not right, “he added.