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Japan PM shuns shrine, apologizes at WWII ceremony


Valin

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AP:

YURI KAGEYAMA (AP)
8/15/10

TOKYO — Japan's new liberal prime minister shunned a visit to a shrine that has outraged Asian neighbors for honoring war criminals, breaking from past governments' tradition and instead apologizing Sunday for the suffering World War II caused.

(Snip)

"We caused great damage and suffering to many nations during the war, especially to the people of Asia," Kan told a crowd of about 6,000 at an annual memorial service for the war dead at Budokan hall in Tokyo.

"We feel a deep regret, and we offer our sincere feelings of condolence to those who suffered and their families," he said. "We renew our promise to never wage war, and we promise to do our utmost to achieve eternal world peace and to never repeat again the mistake of war."

(Snip)

Last week, he apologized to South Korea for Japan's 1910-45 colonial rule. Imperialist Japan committed atrocities in Asia, including forcing Koreans to fight as front-line soldiers, work in slave-labor conditions and serve as prostitutes in military-run brothels.

In Seoul, South Korean President Lee Myung-bak, speaking Sunday before a crowd packing a plaza near the former royal palace, said history should not be forgotten but urged Japan and his nation to work together for a new future.

"I have taken note of Japan's effort, which represents one step forward," Lee said of Kan's apology.
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Long, long overdue.

 

Barama could take a lesson from this - apologize for things your country actually did, and did within living memory.

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