Okinawa Marks 74 Years after End of Fierce Ground Battle
Itoman, Okinawa Pref., June 23 (Jiji Press)--Residents in Okinawa Prefecture, southern Japan, mourned those who died in the Battle of Okinawa in the final phase of World War II, on the 74th anniversary on Sunday of the end of the fierce ground battle.
A memorial ceremony sponsored by the Okinawa prefectural government took place at the Peace Memorial Park in the Mabuni district in the Okinawa city of Itoman.
Some 5,100 participants, including Okinawa Governor Denny Tamaki, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and the heads of both chambers of the Diet, the country's parliament, renewed their pledge for peace and observed a minute of silence for the war dead from noon (3 a.m. GMT).
The annual ceremony was the first since the new Japanese era of Reiwa started on May 1 and since Tamaki took office last year. Mabuni was the venue of the last fierce fighting during the Battle of Okinawa.
Tamaki vowed to help achieve permanent peace by conveying Okinawa's heartfelt desire for peace throughout the world and correctly teaching the importance of peace to the next generation.
[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]