World / Asia-Pacific

S. Korea denounces Japanese minister's visit to war shrine

(Xinhua) Updated: 2014-04-12 21:12

SEOUL - South Korea on Saturday denounced a Japanese Cabinet minister's visit to the controversial war-linked Yasukuni Shrine.

Japanese Internal Affairs and Communications Minister Yoshitaka Shindo on Saturday visited the Yasukuni Shrine at a local memorial ceremony.

The Japanese cabinet official's visit to the Yasukuni Shrine, despite of criticism and worries from the international community, was a repeated action that glorifies Japan's past aggressions, the South Korean foreign ministry said in a statement.

It added that the visit was a direct provocation both to the neighboring countries that suffered from Japan's past imperialist aggression and to the international community.

The ministry urged Japan to cancel this "retrograde" action, humbly retrospect their history and make efforts to establish a South Korea-Japan ties based on mutual trust.

The controversial Yasukuni Shrine, which honors 2.5 million Japanese war dead including 14 leading war criminals of the World War II, is considered as a symbol of Japan's past militarism.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's visit to the Yasukuni shrine in 2013 stirred a wider range of condemnation and stern responses from Japan's neighboring countries, especially from China and South Korea.

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