Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited the controversial Yasukuni shrine Thursday, sparking outrage in China and South Korea and further damaging Japan's already frosty relations with the region. Yasukuni shrine honors the country's nearly 2.5 million war dead, including convicted World War II war criminals.
Abe said his visit was a personal one to honor the spirits of the dead and was not meant to hurt Chinese or Korean sentiments. He said his presence was meant to show Japan was against war.
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