Man Who Grew Up Seeing Shuri Castle Waits for Reconstruction


Naha, Okinawa Pref., June 23 (Jiji Press)--Zenichi Yoshimine has seen Shuri Castle in Naha, Okinawa Prefecture, burn twice in his lifetime.

It was destroyed by fire during the Battle of Okinawa, a fierce ground battle in southernmost Japan in the final phase of World War II.

"Shuri Castle wasn't built for wars. It's a symbol of peace," Yoshimine, an 87-year-old Naha resident, says, hoping for the early reconstruction of the iconic castle, which was heavily damaged by fire in late October last year.

During the war, Yoshimine was a student of an elementary school located inside the castle premises. The castle was a playground for him and his friends.

In April 1945, when he was 12 years old, Yoshimine watched the castle being engulfed in fire for nearly half a day, after it was attacked by U.S. forces.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press