Tokyo, Aug 15 (efe-epa).- Japanese emperor Naruhito on Saturday expressed his “deep regret” for the “ravages” caused by World War II and hoped this would “never be repeated,” in the commemoration of 75 anniversary of the country’s surrender.
“Looking back on the long period of post-war peace, reflecting on our past and keeping in mind feelings of deep regret, I sincerely hope that the ravages of war will not be repeated again,” Naruhito said in his speech at the event.
Naruhito, 60, and the first Japanese emperor born after World War II, made a speech practically identical to the one he gave last year in the same ceremony, during which it was his first intervention as the occupant of the Chrysanthemum Throne.
The emperor, who ascended to the throne in May 2019, again used the same words as his father, Emperor Akihito, who since the 70th anniversary of the end of the war in 2015 had used the terms “deep regret” in his annual message.
For his part, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Japan “will never forget the fact that the peace and prosperity it currently enjoys were built on the final sacrifices of those who fell in war.”
The conservative Japanese leader stressed that during the last 75 years Japan “has made continuous progress as a country that values ??peace”, and stressed that “the promise will be kept to never repeat the tragedy of war,” in line with the tone that he has been using in these annual events since he came to power in 2012.
As in his previous interventions, Abe did not refer to the aggressions perpetrated against neighboring countries, and hours before his participation in the event, he sent a wreath to a cemetery near the controversial Yasukuni Shrine in the capital, which these countries link to the Japanese colonialist past.
The central act to commemorate the 75 years of the Japanese surrender was held on this occasion on a reduced scale due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The event was held as every year at the Nippon Budokan stadium in Tokyo and had half a thousand participants including government representatives, politicians and relatives of the victims, a number well below the 6,000 guests from last year. EFE-EPA