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Last Updated: Friday, 6 October 2006, 12:04 GMT 13:04 UK
Japan shrine 'to review display'
Yasukuni shrine
The shrine is at the heart of tensions with Japan's neighbours
Japan's controversial Yasukuni shrine is to review a controversial display that says the US provoked Japan into entering WWII, Japanese media reports.

The US government complained about the exhibit, which claims that a US economic embargo forced Japan into war.

The Yasukuni shrine, seen by critics as a symbol of Japan's past militarism, has soured ties with its neighbours.

It is likely to overshadow a fence-mending visit to neighbours that New PM Shinzo Abe begins on Sunday.

He will visit China - the first Japanese premier to visit Beijing in five years - before moving on to South Korea.

YASUKUNI SHRINE
Built in 1869 to honour victims of the Boshin Civil War
Now venerates the souls of 2.5m of Japan's war dead
Those enshrined include 14 Class A war criminals

China had refused to meet his predecessor, Junichiro Koizumi, because of his annual visits to the shrine.

'Major review'

Mr Abe has not said if he plans to visit Yasukuni himself.

Japan denied reports out of China that he had promised not to visit the shrine "for the time being".

The Yushukan museum, based in the Shinto shrine, was changing or deleting the reference to the US at the request of US officials and others who had questioned its accuracy, Japan's Kyodo news agency said.

Reuters news agency quoted a statement from the shrine that said it was reviewing all the museum's exhibits - and would be seeking the opinions of experts - in line with the fifth anniversary of its renovation.

"In order to make the exhibits more substantial, we will also review the historical accounts," the statement said.

Controversy over Yasukuni centres on the fact that 14 Japanese war criminals are venerated at the shrine, alongside its war dead.




SEE ALSO
Japan's controversial shrine
15 Aug 06 |  Asia-Pacific
Profile: Junichiro Koizumi
24 Apr 01 |  Asia-Pacific
Anger at Japan PM's shrine visit
14 Jan 03 |  Asia-Pacific

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