Moon says Trump deserves Nobel Peace Prize

South Korean President Moon Jae In (left) and US President Donald Trump arrive to give a joint press conference in the Rose Garden at the White House in Washington, DC, on June 30, 2017. PHOTO: AFP

SEOUL • South Korean President Moon Jae In has said US President Donald Trump deserves a Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts to end the stand-off with North Korea over its nuclear weapons programme, a South Korean official said.

"President Trump should win the Nobel Peace Prize. What we need is only peace," Mr Moon told a meeting of senior secretaries, said a presidential Blue House official who briefed the media on Monday.

Mr Moon and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un pledged at a summit last Friday to end hostilities between their countries and work towards the "complete denuclearisation" of the Korean peninsula.

Mr Trump is preparing for his own summit with Mr Kim, which he said would take place in the next three to four weeks.

In January, Mr Moon said Mr Trump "deserves big credit for bringing about the inter-Korea talks. It could be a resulting work of the US-led sanctions and pressure".

Mr Trump's predecessor, Mr Barack Obama, won the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize just months into his presidency, an award many thought was premature, given that he had little to show for his peace efforts beyond rhetoric.

Even Mr Obama said he was surprised and, by the time he collected the prize in Oslo at the end of that year, he had ordered the tripling of US troop numbers in Afghanistan.

Three other US presidents have also won the Nobel Peace Prize: Theodore Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson and Jimmy Carter.

Mr Moon's Nobel Prize comment came in response to a congratulatory message from Ms Lee Hee Ho, the widow of the late South Korean president Kim Dae Jung, in which she said Mr Moon deserved to win the prize, the Blue House official said.

Mr Moon responded by saying that Mr Trump should get it.


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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 02, 2018, with the headline Moon says Trump deserves Nobel Peace Prize. Subscribe