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The education ministry asked publishers of new high school history textbooks to remove references to the Imperial Japanese Army’s role in forcing civilians to commit mass suicide during the Battle of Okinawa, according to results of the textbook screening released Friday.

The education ministry panel screening the textbooks asked for the first time for changes to descriptions stating that Okinawans had been “forced by the Japanese military” into committing mass suicide, leading to the references being deleted.

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