Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump has called for a "national anti-crime agenda" to combat violent crime in US cities as he condemned the unrest in Charlotte in North Carolina, where protests turned violent.
"Our country looks bad to the world, especially when we are supposed to be the world's leader. How can we lead when we can't even control our own cities," Trump said during a speech in Pittsburgh on Thursday to a conference of shale oil and natural gas producers, CNN reported.
After police shot a man officials say was armed, two nights of protests followed there, slipping into violence Wednesday night with numerous civilian and police injuries reported, as well as looting and property destruction.
Trump, who has focused on restoring "law and order" in his presidential campaign, seized on the unrest in Charlotte to renew his call for tough-on-crime policies to bring down crime rates in major American cities and once again appeal to African-Americans to join his campaign.
"The people who will suffer the most as a result of these riots are law-abiding African-American residents who live in these communities where crime is so rampant," Trump said.
"There is no compassion in tolerating lawless conduct. Crime and violence is an attack on the poor and will never be accepted in a Trump administration, ever, ever."
Trump has previously said that he would look to increase the number of police officers in inner cities to bring down the crime rate and improve training, but has offered little other specifics on this policy front.