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A day after Prime Minister Shinzo Abe repeated during his historic visit to Pearl Harbor that Japan would never again wage war, Defense Minister Tomomi Inada raised eyebrows by paying a visit to war-linked Yasukuni Shrine on Thursday.

The move immediately drew protests from China and South Korea, former victims of Japan who regard the Shinto site as a symbol of Japan’s fervent militarism from the 1930s and 40s. The shrine honors Class-A war criminals along with Japan’s war dead.

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