Japan lawmakers visit Yasukuni Shrine, South Korea protests


The group of lawmakers who visited the shrine included nine junior ministers. - Reuters

TOKYO (Reuters): Nearly 100 Japanese lawmakers from several political parties visited the controversial Yasukuni Shrine for war dead in Tokyo on Tuesday (Dec 7), prompting the South Korean government to express "deep concern and regret".

The shrine is seen by Seoul and Beijing as a symbol of Japan's past military aggression because it honours - among some 2.5 million war dead - 14 Japanese World War Two leaders convicted as war criminals by an Allied tribunal.

Ninety-nine lawmakers, all members of a group that makes periodic mass visits to the shrine, usually visit the shrine for its spring and autumn festivals, as well as the Aug 15 anniversary of Japan's surrender, but had put off visits since October 2019 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The group included nine junior ministers in the cabinet of Prime Minister Fumio Kishida. It was not clear why the group decided to visit the shrine specifically on Tuesday.

South Korea's foreign ministry expressed in a statement "deep regret and concern for the visit to Yasukuni Shrine, which beautifies the colonial invasion and war of aggression".

"We are again strongly pointing out that the international community could trust Japan when it faces up to history correctly and demonstrates its humble reflection of the past and sincere remorse through actions," it said.

Kishida, who became prime minister in early October, sent a ritual offering to Yasukuni for the autumn festival but followed the example of previous Japanese leaders, who have refrained from visiting in person during the spring and autumn festivals or on the anniversary of Japan's surrender to avoid angering China or South Korea.

Article type: free
User access status:
Join our Telegram channel to get our Evening Alerts and breaking news highlights

Japan , South Korea , Yasukuni , shrine

   

Next In Aseanplus News

Asian markets follow Wall St down as traders eye Fed meeting
China opposes Japan, US interfering in its domestic affairs
RCEP set to boost recovery, multilateralism, forum told
Taiwan reports new large-scale Chinese air force incursion
Myanmar reports 112 new Covid-19 infections, one more death
Thailand records 7,139 Covid-19 cases and 13 deaths
Surrendered pet hamster in Hong KONG tests positive for Covid-19
Tributes flow in from all over the world for ‘father of mindfulness’
Marcos absent from TV interview with presidential hopefuls
Cultural China: "All people are my brothers and sisters"

Others Also Read


Vouchers