Japan denies Yasukuni visit unconstitutional
Updated: 2005-10-25 21:35
Japanese government on Tuesday denied that Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's
Yasukuni visit is unconstitutional.
According to the answer statement decided at a cabinet meeting, anyone, even
if at the position of prime minister, has no relation or problem with the
Constitution if he decides to pay a private visit to the Yasukuni Shrine.
"As long as the premier tell the public the war-dead honoring purpose of his
Yasukuni visit and does not take part in religious ceremony there, his visit,
even if an official one, does not violate the constitutional separation of state
The statement was in reply to the questioning of the main opposition
Democratic Party of Japan that required the government to explain on Koizumi's
Oct. 17 visit to the war-related shrine.
Koizumi paid his 5th Yasukuni visit a week ago despite constant opposition at
home and abroad.
He has visited the Tokyo-based shrine, which honors 14 Class-A war criminals
responsible for Japan's aggression against its Asian neighbors before and during
the World War II, once a year since taking office in April 2001.