Chicago: Donald Trump is under fire from rivals who blamed his incendiary rhetoric for a violent outbreak on Friday between protesters and supporters at the Republican frontrunner’s rally in Chicago.

A Trump protester being whisked away by security during a rally in Chicago. Pic/AFP
A Trump protester being whisked away by security during a rally in Chicago. Pic/AFP

Trump cancelled the event after demonstrators scuffled with his supporters and police struggled to maintain order, with hundreds of protesters showing up. “When you have a campaign that affirmatively encourages violence, you create an environment that only encourages this sort of nasty discord,” Trump’s main rival, Ted Cruz, told reporters.

When a protester disrupted Trump's speech in Las Vegas, the brash billionaire said he would like to “punch him in the face.”

Candidate John Kasich, also a Republican, said that “the seeds of division that Donald Trump has been sowing this whole campaign finally bore fruit, and it was ugly.”