Yasuo Fukuda, 91st Prime Minister of Japan, apologized for Japan’s attacks on Asian countries during the war and didn’t visit Yasukuni Shrine. Let’s look at the opinions of the current five candidates.

Yasukuni Shrine is quite controversial because of the “2,466,532 people contained in the shrine’s Book of Souls, 1,068 were convicted of war crimes by a post World War II court. Of those, 14 are convicted Class A war criminals (“crime against peace”). Furthermore, the Yūshūkan – the shrine’s history museum – contains some revisionist accounts of Japan’s actions in World War II.”

These are the opinions of the candidate on the visit:

Nobuteru Ishihara: would like to visit, because he has a relative enshrined there.
Taro Aso: was vague in his response (not surprising – he read too many manga)
Kaoru Yosano: said flatly he would not go.
Yuriko Koike and Shigeru Ishiba (former defense ministers): did not explicitly answer one way or the other, but said it is important to create an atmosphere in which the emperor can visit the shrine.

Source: Split on elections, war shrine (Straits Times) [via Topix]

Further Reading:

Yasukuni Shrine
Controversies surrounding Yasukuni Shrine
Candidate Profiles


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