South Korea on Tuesday pointed out to Japanese politicians not to visit a controversial war shrine on the anniversary this week of its surrender in World War II.
The shrine in honors Japan’s war dead including Class A war criminals from World War Two. Hideki Tojo who was the leader of Japan is an example.
Around 2.5 million souls are enshrined there, the vast majority of them soldiers who died in Japan’s armed conflicts running up to and including World War II.
But it is also the repository for the souls of 14 men who were convicted of war crimes by a U.S.-led tribunal after Japan’s 1945 surrender, including General Hideki Tojo, the prime minister who ordered the attack on Pearl Harbor.
China, the two Koreas and other nations that were victims of Japan’s aggressive expansionism in the period see the shrine as a symbol of the nation’s militaristic past.
“We once again stress that there should be no trips by top Japanese politicians to Yasukuni Shrine,” South Korean foreign ministry spokesman Cho Tai-Young told reporters.
“Our government and people will never tolerate such visits,” Cho said.
Many South Koreans believe Japan has failed to atone for abuses carried out during its 1910-1945 colonial rule over the Korean peninsula.
According to AFP report earlier this month that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will not visit the shrine on Aug 15—the anniversary of the Japanese surrender.