Nanjing holds remembrance service for 1937 massacre
Sunday, December 13th is China's National Memorial Day for the 1937 Nanjing Massacre. 78 years ago, over 300 thousand Chinese people were killed in cold blood in the eastern city of Nanjing by Japanese troops. This morning, a remembrance ceremony was held at the Victims' Memorial Hall in Nanjing.
The national flag lowered to half-mast. And a silent tribute for one minute.
Thousands of people including officials, soldiers, veterans and school children attended the remembrance ceremony at the Memorial Hall for the victims of the Nanjing massacre.
Soldiers laid wreaths in front of the main memorial as solemn music played.
Vice Chairman of the NPC Standing Committee, Li Jianguo delivered a keynote speech.
"We commemorate the victims, honor the soldiers and blame the acrocities. This is not to continue the hate, but to raise people's yearn for peace, and to build a peace and a better future," Li said.
A Declaration of Peace was read out and the Bell of Peace sounded.
Dozens of doves were also released.
The massacre has become a key event in Chinese history... and still casts a shadow over the modern-day relationship between China and Japan.
Li Jianguo said China and Japan should together contribute to world peace.
"We are strongly against any behaviors to beautify aggression. China and Japan have seen great progress in bilateral relations since the normalization of diplomatic ties between the two sides in 1972. The two countries should based on the principles of 'China-Japan Joint Statement', take history as a lesson and face the future. We continue to cooperate and contribute together to world peace and development," Li said.
Ceremonies also took place at 17 other mass grave sites around Nanjing to mark the anniversary.