Aso’s Nazi remarks alarm Asian nations: FM spokesman [People’s Daily]

BEIJING, July 31 (Xinhua) — A spokesman for China’s Foreign Ministry said Wednesday that Japanese Deputy Prime Minister Taro Aso’s Nazi remarks have alarmed Japan’s neighbors and the international community about the country’s development direction.

On Monday, Aso said in a lecture that Japan should learn how Germany’s constitution under the Weimar Republic was transformed by the Nazis in the early 1930s before anybody knew what was happening.

Aso also said it is natural to visit the war-linked Yasukuni shrine to pay tribute to those who sacrificed their lives for the country.

The shrine to the 2.5 million Japanese war dead, including 14 convicted Class-A war criminals, is seen as a symbol of Japan’s past militarism.

Japan’s neighbors in Asia and the international community have to heighten their vigilance over the country’s development direction, since a major Japanese leader spoke openly to amend the pacifist Constitution following an example set by the Nazis, spokesman Hong Lei said in a press release.

The Yasukuni shrine issue concerning how Japan views its history of aggression and whether it respects the feelings of people of war-victim countries in Asia, said Hong.

“We demand the Japanese side reflect on its history, fulfill its commitments on historical issues and win the trust of Asian neighbors and the international community through concrete actions,” he said.

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