Japanese Primer Minister Shinzō Abe nominated President Donald Trump for a Nobel Peace Prize after the U.S. government “informally” requested the nomination, the Asahi newspaper reported Sunday.
Citing unnamed Japanese government sources, the United States’ request for a Peace Prize nomination came after Trump met with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Singapore in June of last year.
Abe, in the paper’s words, was “acceding to a request from Washington” with the nomination.
Trump mentioned Abe’s nomination during a press conference Friday, but made no mention of any U.S. request for a nomination to the Japanese government. A spokesperson for Japan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs told The Japan Times that the office “would refrain from commenting on the interaction between the two leaders.”
“Prime Minister Abe of Japan gave me the most beautiful copy of a letter that he sent to the people who give out a thing called the Nobel Prize,” Trump said Friday. “He said, ‘I have nominated you, or, respectfully on behalf of Japan, I am asking them to give you the Nobel Peace Prize.'”
At the press conference Friday — where Trump announced he was declaring a national emergency in order to secure additional funds to build a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border — Trump brought up the Nobel Peace Prize former President Barack Obama was awarded.
“They gave it to Obama,” Trump said. “He didn’t even know what he got it for. He was there for about 15 seconds and he got the Nobel Prize. He said, ‘Oh, what did I get it for?’ With me, I probably will never get it.”
Trump also claimed Friday that Obama told him, as Trump prepared to take office, that “he was so close to starting a big war with North Korea.”
President Trump said Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe nominated him for a Nobel Peace Prize because of his work in North Korea and claimed that Obama 'would have gone to war' with the Asian nation pic.twitter.com/xtcRwaNm9f
— Reuters Top News (@Reuters) February 16, 2019