The Canadian singer posted photos on his Instagram of the Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo which commemorates Japan’s 2.5 million war dead, which includes convicted war criminals.
China and South Korea viewing the shrine as a glorification of Tokyo’s wartime aggression, when Japan occupied large areas of China and the Korean peninsula during the Second World War.
Justin is on vacation in Japan with his mother and posted the photo of himself in front of the shrine to his 51 million followers, writing, “Thank you for your blessings”.
It was an innocent error of the singer, who later apologized for the photo.
He removed the photos and wrote, “While in Japan I asked my driver to pull over for which I saw a beautiful shrine. I was mislead to think the Shrines were only a place of prayer. To anyone I have offended I am extremely sorry. I love you China and I love you Japan”.
It was a little too late, with followers slamming the singer for the post.
One user wrote: “The Yasukuni shrine is dedicated to [those who] killed countless Chinese prisoners … Japanese planned Nanjing massacre killed tens of thousands of people [in] China. Please face up to history. As a Chinese … I am so sad that you visited the Yasukuni Shrine.”
Another miffed fan wrote, “Maybe you are a giant in Japan and thats the reason why you like Japan. Anyway, please dont come to China forever, we really don’t like stupid people.”
Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Qin Gang, said he had not been aware of Bieber’s visit to the shrine. But he stated, “I hope that this Canadian singer after visiting the Yasukuni shrine can have a clear understanding of Japan’s history of invasion and militarism, and of the source of Japan’s militarism”.
Bieber posted another photo of himself with a man in traditional Japanese clothing.
The Biebs tried to get a little positive attention, posting a photo of himself visiting children in a Japanese orphanage.
Last year, Bieber was forced to issue an apology after he left an offensive comment in the guestbook at the Anne Frank House in Amsterdam. The singer visited the famous home where Jewish wartime diarist Frank and her family hid from Nazi persecution for two years during the Holocaust.
After spending an hour touring the home, Bieber wrote a message in the guestbook, which read, “Truly inspiring to be able to come here. Anne was a great girl. Hopefully she would have been a belieber.”
Click thumbnails for larger pictures