|Japanese Internal Affairs Minister Yoshitaka Shindo (C) arrives at the war-linked controversial Yasukuni Shrine for worship, in Tokyo, on Aug. 15, 2013. Visits to the shrine by Japanese ministers and lawmakers have sparked strong opposition from China and South Korea, both of which had suffered from Japan's aggression. (Xinhua/Ma Ping)
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TOKYO, Aug. 15 (Xinhua) -- Two Japanese ministers on Thursday morning visited the notorious Yasukuni shrine, a move that will further harm mutual trust between Japan and its neighbors.
The visit was made by Japanese Internal Affairs and Communications Minister Yoshitaka Shindo and Keiji Furuya, state minister in charge of North Korea's past abductions of Japanese citizens.
They came to the shrine successively during 8:00 to 9:00 am, and left after 15 minutes' visit.
Shindo told reporters in the shrine that he visited as a " private person," not as a state minister.
Shinjirou Koizumi, son of former prime minister Junichiro Koizumi, also visited Yasukuni Shrine in the morning.
Repeated visits to the controversial shrine by Japanese leaders and lawmakers have become a major obstacle for Japan to mend ties with its neighbors, especially China and South Korea, which suffered from Japan's invasion during World War II.
There is irrefutable evidence that Japanese militarism was responsible for crimes of aggression during World War II. Only by looking squarely at and reflecting on its history can Japan develop a real sense of friendly and cooperative relations with Asian neighbors.