US lawmaker concerned about Japan PM shrine visits
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US lawmaker concerned about Japan PM shrine visits

Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's visits to a controversial Tokyo war shrine raise questions about his suitability to speak to the US Congress, a senior American lawmaker said.

india Updated: May 16, 2006 04:56 IST
Reuters
Reuters
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Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's visits to a controversial Tokyo war shrine raise questions about his suitability to speak to the US Congress, a senior American lawmaker said.

Henry Hyde, chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on International Relations, raised concerns about Koizumi's shrine visits in a letter to House Speaker Dennis Hastert in late April, a spokesman for Hyde said.

"It is a letter in which the chairman does raise concerns about the efficacy of an invitation to the Japanese prime minister, who continues to make controversial visits to the Yasukuni shrine," said the spokesman.

The speaker's office confirmed receiving the letter but had no further comment on its contents or on a possible invitation to Koizumi to address Congress when the Japanese leader visits the United States in June.

The spokesman declined to discuss contents of the letter, parts of which were published by Japan's Asahi Shimbun newspaper on Monday.

First Published: May 16, 2006 04:56 IST