• Kyodo

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North Korea’s official media on Monday criticized Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s recent visit to Yasukuni Shrine, calling it “tantamount to a declaration of war against the peoples in Asia and the rest of the world.”

“Yasukuni Shrine, which enshrines Class-A war criminals, is symbolic of Japan’s militarism that had brought great calamities to Asia,” the official Korean Central News Agency said in a commentary.

“The visit to the shrine and remarks made by the chief executive of Japan have something in common with the actions of those war criminals in the past, who had been hell-bent on invasion of Korea and other Asian nations, calling for ‘conquest of Korea’ and ‘new order in Greater East Asia,’ ” it said.

“Only the destruction is in store for Japan, if its authorities are bereft of such elementary reason as to lend their ears to the warnings and advice of the world community,” the commentary said.

Noting that Japan has been reworking its defense policy and security strategy, KCNA accused it of “consolidating legal and institutional preparations for another aggression.”

“Not content with the present large military expenditure, Japan has increased its military budget for the next year 2.8 percent to cement its material and technical foundation for a war,” it said.

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