World / Lessons from history

Abe shies away from direct apology

By CAI HONG/ZHANG YUNBI/ZHAO YANRONG (China Daily) Updated: 2015-08-15 07:33

what they said

The statement does not give people the impression that it has inherited the spirit of the (Murayama) Statement.

Tomiichi Murayama, former Japanese prime minister

It appears that Japan has not come to terms with its own past, in the same way as, for instance, Germany has. It is not just a statement, but the overall way a country deals with its past, and conveys that to other nations involved.

Peter Ho, a professor at Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands

As we know, several Japanese prime ministers apologized for the war in the past, and it is a great idea to help Japanese people to understand history. Prime Minister Abe should first of all acknowledge what Japan did in Asia during the war. This is important for Asia's peace.

Rana Mitter, professor of history and politics of modern China at the University of Oxford

I would rather see it as a signal that the Abe government is not yet ready to undertake certain steps in the direction of reconciliation and deeper cooperation with neighbors, in particular China and South Korea, mainly due to the current security situation in East Asia and the interpretation given to it by Japanese policymakers.

Nicola Cassarini, a senior fellow for Asia at the Institute of International Affairs in Italy

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