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Central Japanese Prefecture to Use Controversial History Textbook
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The educational board of Japan's central Shiga Prefecture said Wednesday that it will adopt a junior high school history textbook that whitewashes Japan's aggressive war against its Asian neighbors.


The textbook, edited mainly by the Japanese Society for History Textbook Reform and published by Fusosha Publishing Inc., will be used at one of the three prefectural government-run junior high schools from the next school year beginning in April.


It "will contribute to enhancing students' interests in grand sense of our nation's history and characteristics of each era. The students will be enabled to broaden their views," Keiko Takahashi, head of the educational board, was quoted by the Kyodo News as saying when announcing the adoption of the textbook.


Currently, the notorious textbook has been adopted only in Ehime, Otawara, Tochigi and Tokyo's Suginami Ward. Most of Japanese junior high schools have refused to use it.


According to the major Japanese daily Mainichi Shimbun, of all 11,035 state and private junior high schools across Japan, only 48 adopted the Fusosha textbook, merely 0.4 percent of the total and far less than the publisher's target of 10 percent.


(Xinhua News Agency September 1, 2005)


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