World / Unspeakable cruelty of wartime Japan

Japanese soldiers burn Chinese civilians to death

(Xinhua) Updated: 2015-08-19 16:47

Japanese soldiers burn Chinese civilians to death

Photo released on Aug 19, 2015 by the State Archives Administration of China on its website shows a picture of Japanese war criminal Kiyoshi Shimosaka. [Photo/Xinhua]

BEIJING - Japanese World War II soldiers burned Chinese civilians, including women and children, to death, according to a war criminal whose confession to scores of murders and rapes was published by the State Archives Administration (SAA) on Wednesday.

In the ninth of a series of 31 confessions from Japanese war criminals published on the SAA website as China marks the 70th anniversary of the end of WWII, Kiyoshi Shimosaka detailed his brutality in China between 1940 and his capture in August 1945.

According to the 1954 confession, Shimosaka, born in Hiroshima Prefecture, Japan in 1919, together with one companion, barricaded a 30-year-old Chinese woman and her two sons, aged seven and four, in a house and lit straw with a match in May 1940 in Suixian county, Hubei province. They burned down the house, killing the mother and sons.

According to Shimosaka, his companions killed three captives "in order to see how sharp the katana was".

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