Beijing: Chinese President Xi Jinping and other leaders on Saturday participated in the 77th anniversary of the Nanjing massacre amid a drive to revive memories of the Japanese invasion.
The Nanjing Massacre, committed by Japanese aggressors, was one of three major massacres committed during the World War II, Xinhua reported.
In February, China`s top legislature designated Dec 13 as the National Memorial Day for Nanjing Massacre.
Addressing a state ceremony on the first National Memorial Day for Nanjing Massacre Victims, the Chinese president said it was an atrocious anti-human crime and a dark page in the history of humanity.
"Anyone who tries to deny the massacre will not be allowed by history, the souls of the 300,000 deceased victims, the 1.3 billion Chinese people, and all who love peace and justice in the world," Xi said.
The ceremony, presided over by Zhang Dejiang, the chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People`s Congress (NPC), was held at the city`s memorial hall for the massacre victims.
On Dec 13, 1937, the Japanese troops had captured Nanjing, then China`s capital, and carried out a 40-day mayhem. Over 300,000 Chinese soldiers, who had laid down their arms, and civilians were murdered and about 20,000 women were raped, Xinhua reported.
On Saturday, representatives from all walks of life paid silent tribute to the massacre victims during the ceremony as sirens howled over the city.
Wreaths were laid in memory of the victims while China`s national flag flew at half-mast to mourn the victims.
Xi, along with Xia Shuqin, an 85-year-old massacre survivor, and a school child, dedicated a "ding", a type of ancient Chinese cauldron symbolising state power and prosperity.
The three-legged bronze ding will be permanently placed at the square of the hall.
"The purpose of the memorial ceremony for Nanjing Massacre victims is to recall that every good-hearted person yearns and holds a firm stance of peace, but does not try to prolong hatred," Xi said.
He also said the Chinese and Japanese people should live in friendship from generation to generation and make joint efforts to contribute to the peace.