WILMINGTON, North Carolina (Reuters) -U.S. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump canceled a campaign rally in Wilmington, North Carolina, on Saturday because of an incoming storm, but told the crowd he would return at a later date.

Trump told the crowd to leave immediately because of safety concerns as lightening flashed at the rally site.

ā€œIā€™m devastated that this could happen but we want to keep everybody safe,ā€ Trump told the crowd, his voice relayed to loudspeakers at the outdoor rally at an airport in the presidential battleground state. Trump was calling in from his private jet about a half hour before he was set to take the stage.

The event was due to take place after the first week of his hush money trial in New York.

(Reporting by Tim Reid and Timothy Gardner; Editing by Sandra Maler)

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