Japan Emperor, Empress Mourn War Dead Sailors at Ceremony


Yokosuka, Kanagawa Pref., May 25 (Jiji Press)--Japan's Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako attended the 50th memorial service for sailors who died in World War II and in the line of duty, held at Kannonzaki Park in Yokosuka, Kanagawa Prefecture, eastern Japan, Wednesday.

After offering silent prayers, the Emperor and the Empress laid bunches of white flowers at a monument set up for sailors who died in the war while bowing deeply.

At the ceremony, Emperor Naruhito expressed his deep condolences and said, "We must never forget that the peace and prosperity of our country have been built on the basis of the precious sacrifices of numerous people, including sailors who died in the war and in the line of duty, and through the tireless efforts by people of the country."

During the Pacific War, part of World War II, many civilian ships were requisitioned, leading more than 60,000 sailors to die.

The ceremony was also attended by bereaved relatives. "Take care of yourself," Emperor Naruhito told Yohei Nakasato, 92, an attendee, who lost his brother, "You must have had a hard time," Empress Masako told Yoko Wada, 81, who lost her father when she was a child.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press