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UPDATED: 09:47, July 02, 2005
DPRK criticizes Japanese official's reckless remarks
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The Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) condemned a Japanese official for his assertion against the International Far Eastern Military Tribunal and vindication of the visits to the Yasukuni Shrine by Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi, calling it "a challenge to justice and human conscience."

"This is rubbing salt on the wounds of the Asians who suffered immeasurable misfortune and disasters due to the Japanese imperialists," said the DPRK's official newspaper Rodong Sinmun in a commentary, which incisively criticized remarks by Masahiro Morioka, senior official from Japan's Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare.

Masahiro reportedly asserted that the Tribunal was "an illegal one" as it was held when Japan was under occupation and its Class A war criminals were not guilty. He also openly vindicated the visits to the Yasukuni Shrine by Japan's politicians.

"The Japanese reactionaries' reckless remarks terming the Tribunal as an illegal one are nothing but an open re-invasion agitation by those steeped in the militarist idea of aggression to the marrow of their bones," the commentary said.

"By negating the criminal nature of the past war of aggression, painting the war criminals as 'patriotic martyrs', the reactionaries seek to instill the militarist idea of aggression into the Japanese and lay the ideological and political foundation for re-invasion," it added.

Koizumi repeatedly visited the Yasukuni Shrine, where notorious Class-A criminals are honored, and said recently that he will make an "appropriate decision" on when to visit. His behavior has met with strong protests from other Asian nations.

Source: Xinhua

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