Former U.S. President Donald Trump stated in a speech that former President Harry Truman would not have dropped atomic bombs on Japan during World War II if he had been concerned about facing criminal prosecution for it.

"A president should be given immunity," Trump asserted at a rally in New Hampshire on Saturday. "Otherwise, Truman would not have dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki."

While acknowledging that the atomic bombings were "not exactly a nice act," Trump argued that they ultimately brought an end to the war. The August 1945 attacks, occurring during the final days of World War II, devastated the two Japanese cities.

Trump, who faces indictment for attempting to overturn his loss in the 2020 presidential election, has presented the argument in court that individuals serving as president should not be criminally prosecuted unless they are impeached.

It is customary for sitting U.S. presidents not to face criminal charges. However, a federal district court ruled last year that immunity would be lost upon leaving office, potentially exposing former presidents to punishment for criminal acts committed during their tenures.

Trump, currently leading the Republican Party nomination race for the presidential election in November, has appealed against the ruling.