October 2, 2007

Japan: Suicides during World War II to be deleted from school textbooks

Japan's government may rescind an instruction for references to its military's role in forced mass suicides during World War II to be deleted from school textbooks. The government, under former premier Shinzo Abe, in March ordered references to the military's involvement in the suicides of Japanese civilians to be removed from learning materials for the first time. The controversial move angered residents in Japan's southern islands of Okinawa, where about 110,000 people staged a rally Saturday in protest. Education Minister Kisaburo Tokai said the government would consider any requests by publishers to put back into textbooks references to the Japanese military's role in the suicides.

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