South Korean President Moon Jae-in gave credit to United States President Donald Trump for reportedly helping end the standoff with North Korea, noting that he should be awarded a Nobel Peace Prize.
“President Trump should win the Nobel Peace Prize. What we need is only peace,” Moon recently told senior secretaries in South Korea, a presidential Blue House official said on Monday.
According to the official, Moon was responding to a congratulatory message from Lee Hee-ho, the widow of late South Korean President Kim Dae-jung, who said Moon deserved to win the prize. Moon answered by saying Trump deserved it, according to Reuters.
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and Moon have just committed to working toward the “complete denuclearization” of the Korean peninsula.
After both leaders pledged to end hostilities between their countries during the historic summit on Friday, Trump announced that he is also set to have his own summit with Kim reportedly in the next three to four weeks. He has suggested that the meeting could be held at the Peace House on the border between North and South Korea.
Moon said in January that Trump “deserves big credit for bringing about the inter-Korean talks. It could be a resulting work of the U.S.-led sanctions and pressure”.
Aside from imposing strict sanctions on North Korea under his administration, Trump has been actively berating Kim over Pyongyang’s nuclear development in the past year.
On Sunday, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced that Trump maintains a “pressure campaign” of harsh sanctions against North Korea until the country’s nuclear weapon program gets officially scrapped.
Weighing in on the prospect of Trump getting the prize himself, a panel of journalists featured on the “Q&A” on ABC found the whole thing to be absurd.
On Trump’s role influencing the historic meeting between the two Korean leaders, journalist and Lowy Institute senior fellow Richard McGregor admits Trump may have contributed a bit.
“How much is Trump responsible for that? Maybe a little bit, it’s very hard to tell. One of his potentially great qualities is his ability to keep the other side off balance.”
— ABC Q&A (@QandA) April 30, 2018
“Well if Trump’s claiming complete success [then] let’s give him the Nobel peace prize,” journalist/ activist Masha Gessen was quoted as saying.
“Come on, he has tweeted insults and now we’re supposed to think that has made an actual policy difference in the world? How idiotic is that conversation.”
Four U.S. presidents have so far won the Nobel Peace Prize: Theodore Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson, Jimmy Carter and most recently, Barack Obama in 2009.
The recognition, which has been awarded annually since March 1901 (with some exceptions), is given to those who have “done the most or the best work for fraternity between nations, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses”.