U.S. President Joe Biden on Friday pledged to tackle racism as his nation marks 80 years since the signing of a presidential order that led to the incarceration of some 120,000 Japanese Americans during World War II.

Upholding the U.S. government's apology to Japanese Americans who were unjustly sent to internment camps following Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, Biden said in a statement, "We reaffirm our commitment to 'Nidoto Nai Yoni,' which translates to 'Let It Not Happen Again.'"

The incarceration of Japanese Americans — approximately two-thirds of whom were born in the United States — was carried out through an executive order issued on Feb. 19, 1942, by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, under the rationale they might spy for Japan or sabotage the war effort.