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Scotland knew of Japan's threat even before shock win

Scotland centre Mark Bennett said his team fully respected Japan even before the Rugby World Cup minnows stunned South Africa in their tournament opener.

Bennett and his team-mates will begin their own campaign on Wednesday trying to prevent Japan from proving they are not one-win wonders.



Japanese Emperor expresses 'deep remorse' over WWII

Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko attended a memorial service marking the 70th anniversary of Japan's surrender. Credit: Reuters

Japanese Emperor Akihito expressed "deep remorse" over World War Two as the country marked 70 years since its surrender.

The 81 year old's departure from his annual script could be seen as a subtle rebuke of conservative Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who said future generations should not have to keep apologising for the mistakes of the past.

"I pray that this tragedy of war will not be repeated and together with the people, express my deep condolences for those who fell in battle and in the ravages of war, and pray for world peace and the further prosperity of our country," said Akihito.

Earlier, South Korean President Park Geun-hye said Prime Minister Abe's speech contained "regrettable elements", but did not expand on this.

Japanese PM Abe in spotlight over WWII apology

Focus abroad will be on the nature of any apology for Japan's role in the conflict. Credit: Reuters

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is expected to mark the 70th anniversary of the end of World War Two today.

Focus abroad, particularly in China and South Korea, will be on the nature of any apology for Japan's role in the conflict.

Abe is expected to express "deep remorse" for the war and uphold past government statements, but also try to satisfy a domestic conservative base fed up with what it considers a humiliating cycle of apologies.

He has made clear he wants to applaud Japan's post-war peaceful record and outline its future role as an active player on the global stage.

Beijing and Seoul want Abe to stick to a landmark 1995 "heartfelt apology" by then-premier Tomiichi Murayama for suffering caused by Tokyo's "colonial rule and aggression".

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