Sumo diplomacy: Trump presents trophy to sumo tournament champion during visit to Japan – National



U.S. President Donald Trump offered a particular American-made trophy to the winner of a sumo match Sunday as he received a style of one in every of Japan’s most treasured cultural establishments.

The honour given to Trump was a part of a attraction offensive by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe as he courted Trump with three issues near the American chief’s coronary heart: wrestling, cheeseburgers, and golf.

Sumo diplomacy, to sum it up.

WATCH: U.S. President Donald Trump arrives for a spherical of golf with Japanese President Shinzo Abe.

The president, first woman Melania Trump, Abe and his spouse, Akie, joined an estimated 11,500 followers at Ryogoku Kokugikan Stadium to observe large and muscular males, in naked ft and loin cloths, battle for supremacy in a small ring of dust.

On the match’s finish, Trump stepped into the ring and offered the eagle-topped “President’s Cup” to the champion, Asanoyama. Trump, the primary American president to take part in such a ceremony, mentioned later it was an “unimaginable night.”

“That was one thing to see these nice athletes,” Trump mentioned earlier than having dinner with the Abes at a hibachi restaurant.

Trump’s four-day state go to to Japan is designed to exhibit the power of the U.S.-Japan alliance. Earlier Sunday, Abe warmly welcomed Trump to Mobara Nation Membership, south of Tokyo, for a spherical of golf, their fifth since Trump grew to become president.

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Abe is making an attempt to placate Trump amid rising U.S.-Japan commerce tensions and the specter of auto tariffs. Japan is also contending with the continued navy risk from North Korea , a priority seemingly heightened by Trump’s obvious dismissal of the North’s latest checks of short-range missiles that might strike Japan.

Regardless of a number of antagonistic presidential tweets, the day was all about preserving Trump completely satisfied.

First it was golf. Trump and Abe performed 16 holes, joined by Japanese professional Isao Aoki. On the lunch menu: Double cheeseburgers made with U.S. beef.

Then Abe launched Trump to Japan’s historical sport of sumo wrestling , which Trump has mentioned he finds “fascinating.”

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Loud applause greeted Trump as he entered the sector and took his seat a number of rows behind the ring. It was a break from the customized of sitting cross-legged on a mat.

The Japan Sumo Affiliation instituted some security precautions resulting from Trump’s participation, together with promoting fewer same-day tickets and banning the ritual of throwing seat cushions as an expression of disappointment.

Trump sat along with his arms crossed over his chest for a lot of the time, and when the match ended, he walked onto the stage sporting darkish slippers — sneakers are banned from the ring — to current the cup to Asanoyama.

Trump learn from a scroll, praising Asanoyama’s “excellent achievement.” He hoisted the hefty cup, which the White Home mentioned was 54 inches (137 centimeters) tall and weighed 60 kilos to 70 kilos (27 kilograms to 32 kilograms), into Asanoyama’s arms with the assistance of an official. Abe additionally offered a trophy to Asonoyama, and the champion obtained a 3rd one sponsored by the emperor.

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Trump had the trophy made for the sumo winner, and Japanese media informally known as it the “Trump Cup.”

Trump’s attendance on the annual sumo match recalled the time he spent selling the World Wrestling Federation in america. Trump sponsored main occasions, appeared in bits and was inducted into the World Wrestling Leisure Corridor of Fame in 2013.

Trump awaited one other honor Monday when he was to grow to be the primary international chief to satisfy with Japan’s new emperor, Naruhito, since he ascended to the throne on Might 1. Trump and Abe deliberate extra formal talks and scheduled a joint information convention. Trump additionally was to be the visitor of honor at a banquet hosted by the emperor at Japan’s Imperial Palace.

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“We’ve had a good time, an ideal day, and tomorrow is basically the massive occasion, an important occasion within the historical past of Japan,” Trump mentioned simply earlier than having fun with a dinner of grilled rooster, Wagyu beef and vanilla ice cream at a hibachi restaurant with Abe and their wives. “It’s over 200 years since one thing like this has occurred so it’s an ideal honor to be representing america.”

The Abe-Trump alliance started even earlier than Trump took workplace in January 2017, when Abe rushed to New York to greet the president-elect at Trump Tower after Trump’s election two months earlier. Japan is deeply depending on the U.S. for safety, and Abe has tried to encourage Trump to take care of worldwide agreements and hold stress on North Korea.

Golf has been a bonding exercise for 2 leaders who love the sport.

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“We have been in a position to change our views frankly in a comfy ambiance. It was fantastic,” Abe informed reporters as he returned to his official residence from the nation membership. He tweeted a selfie picture of him and Trump smiling extensively on the greens.

Trump tweeted that he’d had “Nice enjoyable and assembly with Prime Minister @AbeShinzo.” However Trump continued to stew about politics again dwelling, claiming that “Quite a few Japanese officers informed me that the Democrats would fairly see america fail than see me or the Republican Celebration succeed – Dying Want!”

Custom holds that American presidents and candidates keep away from politicking whereas on international soil, however Trump is just not one to abide by such norms. He additionally tweeted negatively about Democratic presidential rival Joe Biden, a former vp.

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Trump performed down North Korea’s latest sequence of short-range missile checks and tried to decrease expectations that he and Abe will make important headway on commerce points at their Monday assembly.

Trump has sought a bilateral cope with Tokyo since he pulled the U.S. from the multinational Trans-Pacific Partnership commerce settlement two years in the past, although analysts anticipate no breakthroughs in the course of the journey.

“Nice progress being made in our Commerce Negotiations with Japan. Agriculture and beef closely in play. A lot will wait till after their July elections the place I anticipate huge numbers!” he wrote, referring to Japan’s upcoming parliamentary elections.

Trump has threatened Japan with new tariffs on imports of autos and auto components, citing nationwide safety grounds. He has advised he’ll impose levies if the U.S. can’t win concessions from Japan and the European Union. In April, Japan’s commerce surplus surged nearly 18% to 723 billion yen ($6.6 billion).


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