Belfast Telegraph

Bieber sorry for war shrine trip

Justin Bieber has apologised to those he offended by visiting Japan's Yasukuni war shrine this week, saying he was misled to see it as only a place of prayer.

The Shinto shrine in Tokyo honours 2.5 million war dead, including 14 convicted war criminals. China and South Korea in particular see Yasukuni as a symbol of Japan's past militarism and see visits to it as a lack of understanding or remorse over wartime history.

Two photos removed from Instagram showed pop star Justin praying outdoors at the shrine and standing beside a Shinto priest. The images outraged China as well as many Instagram and Twitter users.

In a new Instagram post, the star explained that he asked his driver to stop when he saw the "beautiful shrine" located in the capital's central district near Budokan Hall, where he performed a concert in 2011.

"I was mislead (sic) to think the Shrines were only a place of prayer. To anyone I have offended I am extremely sorry," the post said.

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