Donald Trump backlash begins with protests against US election result across America – as president-elect prepares to meet Barack Obama

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Protests against the election of Donald Trump as president have swept across the US, with demonstrators burning an orange-haired Trump head in effigy, lighting bonfires and blocking traffic late on Wednesday.

From New York to Los Angeles, thousands of people marched, rallied and chanted in around 10 cities against the billionaire president-elect a day after his stunning upset win, some carrying signs with slogans such as “Not our President” and “Love trumps hate.” Most of the rallies were peaceful.

A demonstrator holds an effigy of US President-elect Donald Trump during a rally near Trump Tower in New York
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A bitter election campaign has left a nation divided. The popular vote is split almost exactly between the two candidates.

And although both Mr Trump and Hillary Clinton have appealed for unity, many fear that the forces unleashed by the president-elect’s bombastic rhetoric could have explosive results.

Protesters gather on Fifth Avenue outside Trump Tower
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In New York, hundreds of people assembled in light rain as darkness fell with banners reading “Not our president” and “If he builds a wall we will tear it down”. The protesters blocked New York’s Fifth Avenue as they descended on the Trump Tower, where the president-elect was lying low.

There were reports of multiple arrests being made and a heavy police presence as units from the NYPD moved in to contain the demonstrators.

In Oakland, California, protesters lit fires in the street and stood around them chanting, news reports said. Some threw bottles and firecrackers at police, KPIX TV reported.

In Los Angeles, demonstrators outside City Hall held aloft a burning, box-shaped likeness of Trump’s head, topped with bright orange hair.

Protesters demonstrate on Fifth Avenue outside Trump Tower
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Ethan Miller, of the workers’ rights group Jobs with Justice, said organisers held a vigil in Washington to show that civil society was resilient.

“It’s a hard time for a lot of Americans,” he said. “We saw a campaign that was filled with racism and misogyny and whole host of other terrible tactics that ultimately were successful for winning the electoral college.”

“But we’re not going to let a Donald Trump presidency stop the progress in this country,” he added.

In London anti-racist protesters gathered outside the US Embassy and there were reports of confrontations with members of a right-wing group, although Scotland Yard said no arrests were made.

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