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Japanese PM makes a surprise visit to war shrine
( 2002-04-21 09:41 ) (8 )

Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi Sunday morning made a surprise visit to Tokyo's Yasukuni Shrine, according to Japan's Kyodo News.

The Shinto shrine honors 14 Class-A war criminals along with the 2.47 million Japanese who have died in wars since the mid-19th century.

Koizumi's visit is likely to anger Japan's Asian neighbors, which have been victims of Japan's aggression during World War II.

Japan's Asian neighoring countries have long been strongly opposed to visits by high ranking Japanese officials to the Yasukuni Shrine in central Japan.

Koizumi last visted the shrine on August 13 in 2001, which has strained Japan's relations with its neighoring countries in Asia.



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