Speaking on the 60th anniversary of the end of World War II, Japanese Emperor Akihito on Monday expressed strong hope that Japan will never again wage war.
"Looking back on history, I ardently hope that the horrors of war will never be repeated," the emperor said in a message delivered at a government-sponsored memorial service held in Tokyo's Nippon Budokan Hall.
The emperor said he prays for "world peace" and Japan's "further development."
Emperor Akihito said that the people's tireless efforts in the past 60 years have created a peaceful and prosperous Japan, but that they also remember the bygone days.
The annual ceremony, at which Empress Michiko was also present, was held in remembrance of the war, which ended on August 15, 1945, following Japan's surrender.
(Xinhua News Agency August 15, 2005)