WASHINGTON, Jan. 3 (Xinhua) -- Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's visit to a controversial war shrine is a deliberate political act aimed at reversing the verdict of history on World War II, Chinese Ambassador to the United States Cui Tiankai said Friday.
In a joint interview with Washington-based Chinese-language media, Cui added that the international community should not allow Abe to disrupt the post-war order and lead Japan back to the catastrophic path of militarism.
Abe's visit to the Yasukuni Shrine in central Tokyo on Dec. 26 was not an isolated individual act, but rather a deliberate act with clear political aims, Cui said.
Abe knew very well the sensitivity of such visits and the severe damage it could cause to Japan's ties with its Asian neighbors, Cui said, recalling that Abe once served in the cabinet of former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi, whose multiple visits to the shrine during his 2001-2006 term gravely strained Japan's relations with China and South Korea.
"Abe's visit totally reflects his historical views, political orientation and policy directions," said Cui, a former Chinese ambassador to Japan.
The Yasukuni Shrine honors Japan's war dead, including 14 Class-A convicted war criminals in World War II. Among them, Iwane Matsui was responsible for the 1937 Nanjing Massacre that murdered more than 300,000 Chinese, and wartime Prime Minister Hideki Tojo was directly responsible for the surprise attack on the Pearl Harbor in 1941.
By paying tribute to convicted war criminals, Abe apparently intended to reverse the historical verdict on World War II and retake the old road of militarism, Cui said.
The Chinese envoy urged all members of the international community with the sense of righteousness to take a clear stand against Abe's wrong actions.
"We shall not allow the reversal of the post-war order, which was built on the sacrifice of tens of millions of lives; we shall not allow the repetition of the tragic sufferings Japan's aggressions brought to Chinese, Korean and American peoples in those years; and we shall not allow Abe to lead Japan in the wrong direction once again," Cui said.
Commenting on Washington's expression of disappointment with Abe's shrine visit and reiteration of its alliance with Japan, Cui said that, as a responsible power, Washington should take a responsible stand on major issues of principle.
It does not serve the United States' interests if there is someone in Japan attempting to reverse the historical verdict on World War II, he said.
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