A newspaper in Japan reported that Japanese troops in World War II massacred hundreds of Indonesian villagers on the island of Barbar and that the Japanese army subsequently covered up the atrocity. The authoritative Asahi Evening News said an unidentified former company commander, the "central figure in the massacre," admitted in an interview "that his unit had committed the massacre." The newspaper said the massacre came to light when Japanese historian Tomio Taketomi obtained a confidential document prepared by officers of the Japanese army division involved in the atrocity. The paper said reports were "doctored in an attempt to explain the slaughter as an act to suppress a 'rebellion by local residents.' "