Go to contents

Ban “Deeply Regrets” Koizumi’s Insistence on Shinto Shrine Worship

Ban “Deeply Regrets” Koizumi’s Insistence on Shinto Shrine Worship

Posted March. 10, 2004 22:17,   


Ban Ki-moon, a minister of MOFAT (the Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Trade) who returned to Korea on March 8 after his visit to the U.S. and Japan, stated that he “deeply regrets” Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi’s insistence on paying homage to the Shinto shrine on March 10.

At the regular briefing on the same day Minister Ban added, “Despite the Korean and Japanese summit agreement on moving the Korea-Japan relationship forward in June of last year to ensure peace and stability in Northeast Asia, several politicians have been making reprehensible statements without an accurate understanding of the past. It is particularly inappropriate for a Japanese political leader to do so.”

Soon after, Minister Ban clarified his opposition against North Korea’s continued running of a “nuclear system for peaceful nuclear activities” as he stated at the sidelines of the second round of multi-party talks in Beijing last month.

He mentioned that “only after North Korea has proven that it has given up all nuclear issues and returns to the NPT (Nuclear Proliferation Treaty) can the issue of “peaceful nuclear activities” be discussed. This is an indication of the difficulty associated with progressing with the construction of North Korea’s light water reactor which was tentatively discontinued for a year in November of last year.

Seung-Ryun Kim srkim@donga.com