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Protester arrested after throwing Russian flags at Trump in US Capitol

US President Donald Trump gestures to reporters as Russian flags thrown by a protester fall in front of him and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell as they arrive for the Republican policy luncheon on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, on October 24, 2017. (Photo by Reuters)

Security guards have arrested a protester who managed to sneak into the US Capitol and throw Russian flags at President Donald Trump.

While walking through the Capitol Hill in Washington DC to attend a lunch with Republican senators on Tuesday, the US president was heckled by a man who shouted “Trump is treason,” before throwing a bunch of Russian flags at him.

The protester, identified as Ryan Clayton, was standing in a press area when Trump and US Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell passed by.

The 36-year-old then started throwing the miniature flags of Russia with the name of ‘Trump’ written on them and was heard yelling, "Trump is treason! Trump is treason!"

The US president who was on his way to attend a policy luncheon and talk about tax reform did not stop or respond to the shouts.

"Why are you talking about tax cuts when you should be talking about treason? Why is Congress talking about tax cuts when you should be talking about treason?" the protester asked, adding that the US president had “conspired with agents of the Russian government to steal the 2016 election.”

Capitol Hill officers later took Clayton into custody and preliminarily charged him with unlawful conduct. Police said the incident was under investigation.

Protester Ryan Clayton shouts at US President Donald Trump as he is taken into custody after disrupting Trump's arrival for the Republican policy luncheon on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, October 24, 2017. (Photo by Reuters)

Clayton is head of the liberal-leaning Americans Take Action group, which has previously protested Trump.

"The reason we trolled Trump with these flags is to draw attention to the Russian interference in our most recent American election, helping to decide the outcome in favor of the Trump campaign," Clayton wrote in a piece for the Huffington Post. "Working with a foreign power to undermine our free and fair elections is treason."

The protest came amid a sweeping federal probe investigating whether Trump’s campaign associates coordinated with Russia to help the Republican defeat his Democratic rival Hillary Clinton in last year’s election.

In a declassified report released in January, the intelligence community concluded that Russia ran a series of high-profile cyber attacks to change the outcome of the November 8 presidential election. 

Russian President Vladimir Putin, however, has firmly denied the hacking allegations and the probe has been called a “witch hunt” by the US president.

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