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Japan PM Shinzo Abe visits Yasukuni WW2 shrine

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Japan PM Shinzo Abe visits Yasukuni WW2 shrine

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has visited a controversial shrine to World War Two dead, exactly one year after he took office.

Mr Abe said his visit to Yasukuni was "to pledge and determine that never again will people suffer in war".

He said it was "not intended to hurt the Chinese or South Koreans".

But a Chinese foreign ministry official was quick to denounce the visit as "absolutely unacceptable to the Chinese people".

Yasukuni honours several convicted Japanese war criminals. Beijing and Seoul see it as a symbol of Tokyo's war-time aggression.

This is the first visit to Yasukuni by a serving prime minister since 2006.