Donald Trump has claimed he had ‘his’ Nobel Peace Prize stolen from under him by the Ethiopian Prime Minister in a bizarre rant at a campaign rally in Ohio.

The US president appeared to suggest East African leader Abiy Ahmed - who was given the award for brokering a deal to end the bloody conflict between his country and neighbouring Eritrea - had been honoured over him, adding he “saved a big war” because of the intervention.

After berating the assembled media as “some real sick ones” at an event in Toledo on Thursday, Trump turned his attention to the annual prize, given for promoting unity between people across the globe.

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He told the crowd: “I'm going to tell you about the Nobel Peace Prize, I'll tell you about that. I made a deal, I saved a country and I just heard that the head of that country is now getting the Nobel Peace Prize for saving the country.”

“I said: 'What, did I have something do with it?' Yeah, but you know, that's the way it is. As long as we know, that's all that matters... I saved a big war, I've saved a couple of them."

Trump did not mention Ethiopia, its Prime Minister or Eritrea by name during his short tirade, but did infer he helped agree peace between the previously warring nations.

Mr Abiy was named as the winner of the award in October last year and collected the prize at a ceremony in December.

It came after the Ethiopian leader officially brought an end to a 20-year conflict between the two countries by signing a peace deal with Eritrea's President Isaias Afwerki in 2018.

The bitter border war between the two nations started in 1998 and although a ceasefire was signed in 2000, tens of thousands of people lost their lives in the fighting.

The new deal opened up trade routes and border controls between the two countries.

However, US influence in peace talks was ‘minimal,’ according to the BBC’s former Ethiopia correspondent, Emmanuel Igunza.

Instead, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia were key to breaking down barriers to the talks, he told the BBC website.

Trump has previously publicly said he ‘deserved’ the prize for his efforts to convince North Korea to abandon their nuclear weapons programme.

But the Washington Post may have uncovered the source of the President’s confusion - reportedly conflating that deal with another the US is heavily involved in to accelerate a dam-building project on the Nile River.

Egypt had previously raised concerns over the deal, citing issues with the water flow relied on by the North African country.

Ministers from the countries, plus Sudan, are expected to meet in Washington on Monday to report on the failure of their latest round of talks.

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“He was talking about Egypt and Ethiopia,” the official with Ethiopia’s foreign ministry said.

The official asserted that Egypt’s president lobbied Mr Trump over the disputed dam project, leading to the US taking a role in the discussions.

“President Trump really believes he avoided a war as such … but that was not the case,” the official said.