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Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe Tuesday offered his “condolences,” but no apology, for the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor 75 years ago that took more than 2,000 American lives.

“I offer my sincere and everlasting condolences to the souls of those who lost their lives here,” Abe said during an historic appearance in Pearl Harbor with President Obama. “As well as to the spirits of all the brave men and women whose lives were taken by a war that commenced in this very place, and also to the souls of the countless innocent people who became the victims of the war.”

Abe was not expected to issue an apology, but some Americans wanted him make one.

Obama stressed the reconciliation that has occurred between Japan and the United States.

“Wars can end,” Obama said on a pier that overlooks Pearl Harbor and the USS Arizona memorial. “The most bitter of adversaries can become the strongest of allies. The fruits of peace always outweigh the plunder of war. This is the enduring truth of this hallowed harbor.”

As Abe stood next to him, Obama said: “It is here that we remember that even when hatred burns hottest, even when the tug of tribalism is at its most primal, we must resist the urge to turn inward. We must resist the urge to demonize those who are different.”

Obama and Abe took part in a wreath-laying ceremony aboard the USS Arizona Memorial.

Abe’s pilgrimage on Tuesday is the first “official” visit to Pearl Harbor of a Japanese prime minister, though other leaders from Japan have been there before. In May, Obama became the first sitting American president to visit Hiroshima, where the United States dropped an atomic bomb to bring an end to World War II.

Earlier on Tuesday, Obama, who has been vacationing over the holidays in Hawaii, met with Abe at Camp H.M. Smith, the Marine Corps installation that serves as the headquarters of the United States Pacific Command.

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The White House billed the visit as an opportunity to “showcase the power of reconciliation that has turned former adversaries into the closest of allies, united by common interests and shared values.”

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