The Korea Herald


U.S. acknowledges 'pain of the past' associated with atomic bombings of Japan: State Department

By 임정요

Published : May 26, 2016 - 09:30

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The United States acknowledges the "pain of the past" associated with its 1945 atomic bombings of Japan, and wants to move toward building a stronger alliance with the foe-turned-ally, the State Department said Wednesday.

State Department deputy spokesman Mark Toner made the remark when asked to comment on Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida's reported statements that the U.S. atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki were "extremely regrettable."

"I would just say that, you know, we acknowledge the pain of the past and we look forward to building a stronger future," Toner said. "With that in mind, that we need to move beyond the conflicts, and suffering and sacrifices and build a stronger alliance with respect to that."

Kishida made the remarks on Tuesday, just days before U.S. President Barack Obama pays a visit to Hiroshima in a move that critics say could dilute Japan's wartime aggression by making it look more like a victim, rather than the one who started the Pacific war by bombing Pearl Harbor.

According to China's Xinhua news agency, Kishida said that the atomic bombings claimed many lives and brought about "an extremely regrettable humanitarian situation." He also said that the atomic bombings do not conform to humanitarianism.

His remarks were seen as an effort to reinforce the notion of victimhood.

Obama said he has no intention to offer an apology for the atomic bombings.

"Our visit to Hiroshima will honor all of those who were lost in World War II and reaffirm our shared vision of a world without nuclear weapons, as well as highlight the extraordinary alliance that we have been able to forge over these many decades," he said Wednesday during a joint news conference with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. (Yonhap)