Kishida makes ritual offering to Yasukuni Shrine
10:50 JST, April 21, 2022
TOKYO (Jiji Press) —
Prime Minister Fumio Kishida sent a ritual “masakaki” tree offering to Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo on Thursday, when the war-related shrine’s two-day spring festival opened.
He will not pay a visit to the Shinto shrine during the festival. Among other members of his cabinet, health minister Shigeyuki Goto also made a masakaki offering.
Former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Sanae Takaichi, policy leader of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party, visited the shrine on Thursday.
No sitting prime minister has paid a visit to the shrine since December 2013, when Abe did so. His successors avoided visiting the shrine out of diplomatic consideration for China and South Korea.
Yasukuni Shrine is considered a symbol of Japan’s past militarism, particularly in the neighboring countries, as it honors Class-A war criminals along with the war dead.
During the shrine’s autumn festival in October last year, Kishida did not visit the shrine but made a masakaki offering.
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