• Tue
  • Oct 21, 2014
  • Updated: 11:29pm

Yasukuni Shrine

Yasukuni Shrine, located in Tokyo, Japan, is dedicated to over 2,466,000 Japanese soldiers and servicemen who died fighting on behalf of the Emperor of Japan in the last 150 years. It also houses one of the few Japanese war museums dedicated to World War II.The shrine is at the center of an international  controversy by honoring war criminals convicted by a post World War II court including 14 'Class A' war criminals. Japanese politicians, including prime ministers and cabinet members have paid visits to Yasukuni Shrine in recent years which caused criticism and protests from China, Korea, and Taiwan. 


Beijing and Seoul furious at Shinzo Abe's visit to Yasukuni Shrine

Japanese PM rebuked by coalition partner and the US after stoking tensions with neighbours

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 26 December, 2013, 10:05am
UPDATED : Friday, 27 December, 2013, 12:12pm


  • Yes: 29%
  • No: 71%
27 Dec 2013
  • Yes
  • No
Total number of votes recorded: 328

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited a shrine yesterday that honours Japan's war dead, including convicted war criminals, infuriating China and South Korea and prompting a rare expression of concern from the US about deteriorating ties between the East Asian neighbours.

Instead of a pledge against war … the visit is a calculated provocation

China's Foreign Ministry called the visit to the Yasukuni Shrine a "brazen" act and later summoned Japan's ambassador to Beijing to express "strong opposition" to the visit.

"Japan must bear full responsibility for the serious political consequences," Foreign Minister Wang Yi was quoted as telling the Japanese ambassador.

A Xinhua commentary said: "Choosing a sensitive time to visit a highly controversial and notorious place, Abe knows perfectly what he is doing and the consequences. Instead of a pledge against war, as Abe has claimed, the visit is a calculated provocation to stoke further tension."

South Korea called Abe's visit "anachronistic behaviour".

"We can't help deploring and expressing anger at the prime minister's visit," Seoul's culture minister Yoo Jin-ryong said.

Television carried live video of Abe's motorcade making its way to the shrine, which honours Japan's 2.5 million war dead, including 14 class-A war criminals from the second world war. Abe bowed before following a Shinto priest into an inner sanctum.

A conservative who took office for a second term one year ago, Abe said criticism that visits to Yasukuni were an act of worshipping war criminals was based on a misunderstanding.

"Unfortunately, a Yasukuni visit has largely turned into a political and diplomatic issue," he said. "It is not my intention to hurt the feelings of the Chinese and Korean people."

Watch: Japan PM Abe visits Yasukuni war shrine

The US embassy in Tokyo said it was "disappointed that Japan's leadership has taken an action that will exacerbate tensions". It said the US "hopes that both Japan and its neighbours will find constructive ways to deal with sensitive issues from the past".

The head of Abe's coalition partner, the Buddhist-backed New Komeito - which had urged him not to make the pilgrimage - called the visit regrettable.

The Japanese embassy in Beijing warned its nationals to stay away from demonstrations and not congregate in big groups.

A meeting between Vice-Premier Liu Yandong and Japanese lawmakers scheduled for yesterday in Beijing was cancelled. But Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida said the visit was a personal matter.

Reuters, Associated Press, Agence France-Presse


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This article is now closed to comments

All the Japanese have to do is to remove those war criminals from the shrine and openly shame them, but that is too much to ask for.
Of course then there are those idiotic China bashers and say that mao killed more. Yeah we know that, and no I didnt and am not praising Mao, for all I know if the Japanese never invaded China during the fight between KMT and CCP, the KMT would've exterminated the CCP and there wouldn't be a Mao in the first place. Yes Mao took advantage of the Japanese invasion and thanks to them the KMT lost their golden opportunity to exterminate Mao and the CCP came in to power. So yeah thanks a bunch Japan. So next time you remind me of Mao you mindless China bashers, it was the Japanese invasion that gave Mao and the CCP the opportunity to survive and win the civil war.
"it was the Japanese invasion that gave Mao and the CCP the opportunity to survive and win the civil war."
Mao Zedong personally thanked the Japanese delegation for that. Both sides need some serious reexamining to do
This time the US & UN stepped in with their disapproval. But this wasn't reported in details. Moreover, reading the SCMP, you'd think this is a personal fued between China/Japan. It mentions the S. Korean objection only obliquely. How bias can this be?
China is in no position to judge Japanese about visiting Yasukuni Shrine. Mao Zedong and Deng Xaoping both are war criminals aggression against Tibet, Ughur, India, and Vietnam. They are not only war criminals but butchers against their own people, millions of chinese died under Mao Zedong and Deng Xaoping. Chinese protested this latest issue is a farce.
M Miyagi
A miserable git like you not only a piece of **** but a low-life. Why not get yourself enshrined in the Yasukuni Shrine? Abe will be happy to pray to you.
Not only spirits of war criminals but also other soldiers are honoured in Yasukuni Shrine. Furthermore, the shrine was founded on 1869 which was about 80 years ago from WWII. Hence, it is totally misleading to see the shrine as Hitler’s grave or as a symbol of militarism of Japan. Shinzo Abe just prayed for them.
It is very common for the leader of a nation to pray for people who fought for the nation and died. Otherwise, any national of the nation and would not fight for the nation at the risk of his own life. Shinzo Abe did the right thing as the leader of Japan.
M Miyagi
If your parents gave birth to a donkey instead of you it would be better. Is a mother a comfort-woman? You should go live in Japan and see the yakuza tear you to pieces.
It is sad that everything is orchestrated with the sole purpose of creating high profile conflict with China and Korea with the support and agreement of US at the back! It is crystal clear on the intention of Japanese government to create political tension and conflict with China creating a sense that "a war is coming"so that it can shift the economic problem by depreciating the yen and increase local tax continuously. The tension pushes China to react and increase the possibiilty of military conflict which increase the legitimacy of Chinese to upgrade their defense to offense weapon. The evil mind behind what Abe and his government is doing should be condemed by sensable human being who wants to avoid war. Abe also picked a very sensitive time to go to the Shrine - Yesterday - Dec 26th, was the 120th birthday of Mao! Everything is calculated to the fine detail. When it is the right time, US will have a chat with Dali Lama in the White House. By then, the conflict will be upgraded to next level. As US basically solves the energy problem with energy surplus now, US will return to East, 2014 is a year of conflict in Asia. How can this be a Christmas gift after Christmas day! All citizens around the world love peace; politians love to create conflict to justify their presence!
I suppose they should act like the Americans and just start a war, just so they can proove their man hood eh?
Abe unnecessaily provoking neighbours, what is he thinking. Japan should focus on the economics but bring out old antagonism from War time era. Japan have $10 trillion debt and 20 years of stagnation and Abenomics is only a half success. I am starting to think Shinzo Abe is a moron.




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