Japanese PM makes offering at Yasukuni shrine

Japanese PM makes offering at Yasukuni shrine

20Tokyo, April 21 (IANS) Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe made an offering to the notorious war-linked Yasukuni Shrine Monday during its three-day spring festival.

The sacrifice came ahead of US President Barack Obama’s visit to Japan later this week and Abe, in a move to avoid provoking the US, decided not to worship the shrine during the spring festival, Xinhua reported.

Abe also visited Yasukuni on the first anniversary of the launch of his government on Dec. 26 2013.

The December shrine visit triggered strong opposition worldwide, including China and South Korea. The US, Japan’s key ally, also commented that Abe’s visit was disappointed and will worsen Japan’s relations with neighbouring China and South Korea.

Making an offering to the shrine instead of visiting it is widely seen as an attempt by Abe to strike a balance between diplomacy and domestic politics as Abe is strongly supported by Japanese conservatives during his current term, according to local media.

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