Abe expected to visit war-linked Yasukuni ShrineUpdated: 2013-12-26 AM 11:29:05 (KST)
We start with some news just coming in
In a move that caught almost everyone off guard, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe paid a visit to the Yasukuni war shrine in Tokyo on Thursday morning.
NHK and other Japanese media outlets are reporting that Abe visited the highly controversial shrine on the first anniversary of his taking office as prime minister.
It is the first visit to the shrine by a sitting prime minister since Junichiro Koizumi visited the shrine to mark the end of World War II in 2006.
The shrine honors convicted war criminals along with Japan's war dead.
The visit will almost certainly escalate the already tense relations with Seoul and Beijing, who see it as a symbol of Tokyo's unrepentance of its war wrongdoings.