Over 50 percent of Japanese polled in an Asahi Shimbun daily survey said Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi should stop visiting the war criminal-related Yasukuni Shrine, the Asahi Shimbun newspaper said Tuesday.
Meanwhile, the survey found that the memory of the World War II is going away from the Japanese, notably the younger generations.
Fifty-two percent of respondents opposed Koizumi's yearly practice, which has been strongly protested by Japan's Asian neighbors because it enshrines 14 WWII Class-A war criminals.
In the last survey in May, 49 percent said they were against the visit. And the people who support Koizumi's practice were at 36 percent this time, down from the 39 percent in the pervious survey.
Asked why Koizumi should quit the visit, 72 percent of the pollees against the visit said "because the views of neighboring nations should be considered," followed by 13 percent who said "because Yasukuni enshrines Class-A war criminals," according to the newspaper.
The survey showed 58 percent of respondents said they seldom or never talk about the war.
Thirty-eight percent admitted they knew little or very little about the war, while 62 percent said they knew much or somewhat about the WWII.
As for the sources of their knowledge of the war, 35 percent cited their own experiences or the people close to them, followed by 29 percent who learned at school and 15 percent, from books and movies.
According to the survey, 87 percent want to teach younger people about the war.