Shrine upset late emperor / Enshrinement of war criminals 'stopped Yasukuni visits'

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Emperor Showa was displeased that Yasukuni Shrine enshrined Class-A war criminals from World War II together with war dead, it was learned Thursday from a memorandum written by a former Imperial Household Agency official who has since died.

"That is why I've since stopped visiting [the shrine]. That is how I feel in my heart," the emperor was quoted as saying in the memo written by then Imperial Household Agency Grand Steward Tomohiko Tomita in 1988 and released Thursday by his family.

The shrine in Chiyoda Ward, Tokyo, which was originally established in 1869, enshrined Class-A war criminals in 1978. The emperor's remarks suggest that he stopped visiting the shrine since it honored the war criminals along with the souls of war dead, totaling about 2.47 million, some of whom died in battles dating back to the 1860s.

Read entire article at Daily Yomiuri

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