Tokyo | A US veterans group says an American who was held by Japan as a prisoner of war during World War II will accompany President Barack Obama on his historic visit to Hiroshima this week, but the White House said on Monday that no such invitation has been issued.
Jan Thompson, the head of the group, the American Defenders of Bataan and Corregidor Memorial Society, couldn’t be reached immediately for a response. Yesterday, she said by email that the group had chosen a 94-year-old former POW and submitted his name to the White House to join the visit.
However, a White House official said no invitation had been extended. Obama, who is in Vietnam, is coming to Japan later this week for the annual Group of Seven summit, after which he will visit Hiroshima on Friday. He will become the first serving US president to visit the city hit by the first of two atomic bombs the US dropped on Japan near the end of World War II.