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U.S. hopes Japan will resolve history issues with neighbors

The United States on Monday reiterated its hope that Japan will address its neighbors' concerns over history issues through dialogue, following a visit by a Cabinet minister to the war-linked Yasukuni Shrine just ahead of President Barack Obama's trip to Japan. State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said that Washington encourages Japan to work with its neighbors "to resolve concerns over history in an amicable way through dialogue."

Asian countries protest Japanese minister's Yasukuni visit

China, South Korea and Taiwan condemned a visit by Japanese Internal Affairs and Communications Minister Yoshitaka Shindo to the war-linked Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo on Saturday. "This once again shows the mistaken attitude of the current Japanese Cabinet toward history," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said in a statement, according to China's official Xinhua News Agency. China has lodged solemn representations and protests with the Japanese side, he said.

China protests after Japanese minister visits shrine for war dead

BEIJING (Reuters) - China's foreign ministry lodged a protest with Japan on Saturday after a Japanese minister visited a shrine which is seen by critics as a symbol of Tokyo's wartime aggression. China, as well as South Korea, has repeatedly expressed anger in the past over Japanese politicians' visits to the Yasukuni Shrine, where Japanese leaders convicted as war criminals by an Allied tribunal after World War Two are honored along with those who died in battle.

Japan minister visits controversial war shrine

A Japanese cabinet minister visited a controversial war shrine in Tokyo on Saturday, in a move that sparked condemnation by South Korea, which along with China sees it as a symbol of Japan's past militarism. Television footage showed Yoshitaka Shindo, minister for internal affairs and communications, paying homage Saturday morning at the Yasukuni shrine. The shrine honours Japan's war dead including several high-level officials executed for war crimes after World War II.

Japan minister visits controversial war shrine

A Japanese cabinet minister visited a controversial war shrine in Tokyo on Saturday, in a move that sparked rebukes from South Korea and China, both of whom view it as a symbol of Japan's past militarism. Television footage showed Yoshitaka Shindo, minister for internal affairs and communications, paying homage Saturday morning at the Yasukuni shrine. The shrine honours Japan's war dead including several high-level officials executed for war crimes after World War II.

Seoul criticizes Japanese minister's visit to Yasukuni shrine

SEOUL, April 12 (Yonhap) -- South Korea criticized Japan's internal affairs minister Saturday for visiting a controversial war shrine in Tokyo, calling it a "retrograde" action. Japan's minister for internal affairs, Yoshitaka Shindo, paid his respect at the Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo during a local memorial ceremony there earlier in the day. Hours later, the South Korean foreign ministry issued a statement denouncing the visit.

Internal affairs minister Shindo visits Yasukuni Shrine

Internal Affairs and Communications Minister Yoshitaka Shindo visited the war-linked Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo on Saturday, with the lawmaker describing his attendance as "a private matter." "I did it as a private matter which I am free to decide," he told Kyodo News after the contentious visit, which could draw ire from China and South Korea that see the shrine as a symbol of Japan's past imperialism.

Japan minister visits controversial war shrine

A Japanese cabinet minister visited a controversial war shrine in Tokyo on Saturday, in a move likely to cause anger in China and South Korea, which see it as a symbol of Japan's past militarism. Yoshitaka Shindo, minister for internal affairs and communications, paid homage Saturday morning at the Yasukuni shrine, Jiji Press and other news reports said. Shindo, a regular visitor to the shrine, insisted that it was a "private matter", playing down the potential for diplomatic fallout from a visit by a member of the government.

Activists sue Japan PM over "unconstitutional" Yasukuni visit

A citizens' group in Osaka filed a lawsuit Friday with the Osaka District Court claiming Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's controversial visit last December to a shrine honoring the war dead has violated their constitutional right to "live in peace." The suit seeks damages of 10,000 yen for each of its 540 members and an injunction forbidding Abe from making any further visits to Yasukuni Shrine. The group's organizers claim another group of about 270 people will file a similar suit with the Tokyo District Court soon.

Japan's scrambles against Chinese planes hit record high

TOKYO (Reuters) - Japanese fighter jet scrambles against Chinese planes hit a record high in the year that ended in March, the Defense Ministry said on Wednesday, as Sino-Japanese ties were strained by disputes over territory and interpretations of history. Japan scrambled combat planes against Chinese aircraft 415 times during the year, up 36 percent from a year earlier. It was the highest number since the ministry started disclosing country-specific figures in 2001.
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