Donald Trump
Donald TrumpReuters

Republican frontrunner Donald Trump won’t be showing up to next Monday’s Fox News debate ahead of the Utah caucus and Arizona primary, and will be appearing instead at the annual AIPAC conference in Washington D.C.

Speaking to Fox News on Wednesday, Trump claimed he was unaware of Monday’s debate, and would be unable to attend due to “a major speech in front of a very important group”.

“Nobody told me about debates,” the New York billionaire claimed. “As you saw I thought the last debate on CNN was the last debate.”

While the March 21st debate in Salt Lake City a day before the Utah caucus was planned back in February, Trump last week referred to the March 10th CNN debate in Florida as the last GOP primary debate, saying it was “a really nice way to finish off the debate season.”

Trump earlier made headlines when he skipped the January 28th debate in Des Moines Iowa just days before the first-in-the-nation Iowa caucus. The Iowa debate, also hosted by Fox News, came at the height of a feud between the New York real estate mogul and Fox News host Megyn Kelly.

Monday’s debate will be the first since Florida Senator Marco Rubio signaled he was leaving the race, following a poor performance in his home state on Tuesday.

If Trump does in fact skip the debate, it will be the first prime-time GOP debate this season to feature only two candidates, Texas Senator Ted Cruz and Ohio Governor John Kasich.