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Gov't Expresses Deep Regret over Kishida's Yasukuni Shrine Offering

Written: 2024-04-21 13:44:08Updated: 2024-04-21 13:51:58

Gov't Expresses Deep Regret over Kishida's Yasukuni Shrine Offering

Photo : YONHAP News

The government has expressed deep regret and disappointment over Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida sending a ritual offering to the controversial Yasukuni war shrine.

Foreign Ministry spokesperson Lim Soo-suk said in a statement on Sunday that the government deeply regrets that senior Japanese government officials again sent offerings to or visited the shrine, which glorifies Japan's war of aggression and honors war criminals.

Lim said Seoul calls on Japan's responsible leaders to squarely face history and demonstrate humble and sincere remorse over its past through actions, which is an important foundation for the development of future-oriented Seoul-Tokyo relations.

The statement came after Kishida sent the "Masakaki" offering under his title as prime minister earlier on Sunday to mark the beginning of the shrine's spring festival.

Kishida has not visited the shrine in person since taking office in October 2021 and instead sent ritual offerings for biannual festivals in the spring and fall.

However, Japan's Economic Revitalization Minister Yoshitaka Shindo paid a visit to the shrine on Sunday morning.

The shrine, which honors Japan's war dead, including 14 Class-A war criminals, is considered a symbol of Japan's military aggression, and visits by state leaders are often protested by neighboring South Korea and China.

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