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Japan selects ‘war’ as 2022 ideogram due to Ukraine, North Korean missiles

Tokyo, Dec 12 (EFE).- Japanese ideogram “ikusa”, which means “war” or “battle”, was selected Monday as the “kanji” (Japanese character) of the year 2022 because of the ongoing war in Ukraine and North Korea’s repeated missile launches.

The Japan Kanji Aptitude Testing Foundation launches an annual poll in the beginning of November for the residents of the country to vote for the ideogram that, according to them, best represents the social sense and the events of the year.

On December 12, Kanji Day, a monk of the Kiyomizu Temple in Kyoto (west) writes down the most voted “kanji” using the traditional Japanese calligraphy method (shodo), in what has now become a special annual ceremony since it was first held in 1995.

The ideogram of “war/battle” was the most voted (10,804 times) among the 223,000 participants of the survey, followed by those which represented concepts of “security/cheap” (10,616), “fun” (7,999) and “high/expensive” (3,779).

Hirokazu Matsuno, the chief cabinet secretary of Japan, said the choice for 2022 was definitely a reflection of the Russian invasion of Ukraine and the repeated missile launches of North Korea, upon being asked about the same in a press conference after the ceremony.

His choice, he added, would have been the one that bagged the second position, with reference to the current state of security, including the Russia-Ukraine conflict, North Korea’s weapon tests, and inflation.

This is the second time that the ideogram has been chosen as the kanji of the year in Japan after its election in 2001, following the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center in New York. EFE


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