Japan PM Visits Contentious Shrine

    Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (C) speaks to reporters as he visits and offers prayer at the controversial Yasukuni shrine at the shrine in Tokyo on December 26, 2013. Nationalist Prime Minister Abe paid an inflammatory visit to the Yasukuni war shrine, angering China which accused Japan of whitewashing a history of warmongering and said it must "bear the consequences".    AFP PHOTO / JIJI PRESS    JAPAN OUT        (Photo credit should read JIJI PRESS/AFP/Getty Images)

    Jiji Press/AFP/Getty

    Japan’s prime minister managed to irritate Chinese and South Korean leaders and worry the United States in one move. On Thursday, Shinzo Abe visited a controversial shrine that honors those killed in battle alongside Japanese leaders who were convicted of war crimes following World War II. The shrine is seen as a symbol of hostility by China and South Korea, but Abe insisted he went to the shrine in peace. “There is criticism based on the misconception that this is an act to worship war criminals, but I have visited Yasukuni Shrine to report to the souls of the war dead on the progress made this year and to convey my resolve that people never again suffer the horrors of war,” he told reporters.

    Read it at Reuters