20:20 GMT +318 July 2019
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    White House Lockdown Lifted After Suspicious Bag Initiates Security Alert (PHOTOS)

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    The US Secret Service cleared the north grounds of the White House Wednesday afternoon amid reports of a suspicious package on Pennsylvania Avenue.

    Press and pedestrians alike were cleared from the area around the presidential mansion in downtown Washington, DC, amid reports of a suspicious parcel. The Secret Service reported on Twitter that "an individual dropped a backpack and attempted to jump a bike rack along the sidewalk on Pennsylvania Ave," and was promptly taken into custody.

    Secret Service lifted the lockdown at 3:32 p.m. local time.

    ​US President Donald Trump is not in Washington, DC, as he is presently returning from a trip to Florida on Tuesday, where he announced the beginning of his 2020 presidential campaign.

    A CBS reporter on-site tweeted images of Secret Service personnel seeking shelter behind trees on the White House lawn.

    Earlier this month, the Secret Service announced plans to build a new fence around the White House that would be much taller than the existing barrier. The present fence is 6-and-a-half feet tall, but a 13-foot-1-inch fence will be in place by 2022, at a cost of $64 million. Construction is slated to begin later this summer.​

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