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Emperor and Empress mark 66th anniversary of Japan's WWII surrender

Franck Robichon / EPA

Japan's Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko attend to a memorial service at Nippon Budokan Hall in Tokyo, Japan, on August 15. The annual ceremony marked the 66th anniversary of the end of World War II, remembering the death of some 2.3 million soldiers and 800,000 civilians.

Yuriko Nakao / Reuters

Relatives of people who died during World War II, left, receive chrysanthemums from officials to lay before an altar during a memorial ceremony marking the 66th anniversary of Japan's surrender, in Tokyo on August 15.

The AP reports from Tokyo:

Japan marked the 66th anniversary of its surrender in World War II on Monday with somber remembrances across the country and a memorial in Tokyo led by the emperor. The ceremonies come as the country struggles to recover from this year's devastating earthquake and tsunami.

Emperor Akihito, whose father made the unprecedented 1945 national radio address announcing the war could not be won, offered prayers for the dead and hopes for peace at Monday's memorial in Tokyo. Continue reading.