Japan marks 76 years since end of WWll

NHK -- Aug 15
People in Japan are observing a solemn 76th anniversary on Sunday. On August 15th, 1945, a statement from Emperor Showa was broadcast on the radio, announcing that the country had surrendered in World War Two.

Every year, Japan's government organizes a ceremony in Tokyo to remember approximately 3.1 million people who died in the war. Before the coronavirus pandemic, around 6,000 participants would be present. Last year, it was scaled down significantly to about 540 people.

This year it will be even smaller, as infections continue to spread across Japan. Under 200 people are expected to participate. Many prefectures have decided not to send representatives to Tokyo.

Prime Minister Suga Yoshihide will deliver a speech before the participants observe a minute of silence at the stroke of noon. Emperor Naruhito will then make an address.

As Japan commemorates the end of the war, there is a shrinking number of people alive who experienced it.

Around three quarters of the relatives of the war dead who will attend the ceremony are over the age of 70.

Throughout the day, events to remember the lives lost in the war and reflect on peace will be held across Japan.