Koizumi offers apologies for Japan's past

Friday, April 22, 2005

Sino-Japanese relations

In an address to the ongoing conference of Asian and African nations Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi offered apologies for the suffering caused by Japanese aggression in the 1930s and 40s.

"In the past, Japan, through its colonial rule and aggression, caused tremendous damage and suffering to the people of many countries, particularly to those of Asian nations. Japan squarely faces these facts of history in a spirit of humility," after this Koizumi added that the Japanese people have "feelings of deep remorse and heartfelt apology."

Koizumi's apology was the first apology offered by a Japanese leader for its country's past in the presence of such a large number of government leaders from different countries.