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`Japan Inflicted Pain to Neighboring Countries`

Posted August. 16, 2001 08:31,   


Japan`s prime minister Koizumi Junichiro said at the official ceremony to mark the anniversary of Japan`s surrender, held in Tokyo yesterday, that ``our country has caused many countries, especially our Asian neighbors, significant damage and pain during World War II.``

This is the first time in which Japan`s prime minister admitted that Japan was responsible for the war at the ceremony held in memory of defeat of the war.

Former prime minister Murayama Domiichi admitted Japan`s responsibility for the harmful act by saying that ``Japan inflicted a huge damage and pain to people of the Asian countries through the colonial domination and invasion.`` However, without stating the responsible party of the war at the memorial ceremony, he only said that ``Japan inflicted immeasurable atrocities and pain to the neighboring Asian countries.``

Japan`s press reported that prime minister Koizumi Junichiro may hold a summit talk with President Kim Dae-Jung while they meet at the `UN children special assembly` at the UN headquarter in New York on October 19th.

Meanwhile, five cabinet ministers, including Katayama Doranosuke, visited Yasukuni yesterday. Prior to this, two cabinet ministers, including minister of finance Yanakisawa Hakuo, visited Yasukuni on Tuesday. Minister of foreign affairs Tanaka Makiko, who opposed to the shrine visitation, was confirmed to have visited Yasukuni on April 30th right after her new appointment as minister of foreign affairs.

Lee Young-Ee yes202@donga.com