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Tuesday marks the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Nazi Germany’s Auschwitz concentration and extermination camp by the Soviet Army. As we extend our sincere condolences to the victims and their families, this occasion should also serve as a chance for the Japanese, especially political leaders including Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, to deeply reflect on Japan’s own wartime behavior that inflicted pains and suffering on people in the Asia-Pacific region and make a strong resolve to oppose war and discrimination, racial or otherwise.

We also need to learn from the process of post-World War II reconciliation in Europe that eventually led to creation of the European Union. In East Asia, historical issues still cause schisms between Japan, on the one hand, and China and South Korea, on the other.

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