Sunday, 23 September, 2018

South Korea Won't Seek Renegotiation of Comfort Women Deal With Japan

China Calls on Japan to Responsibly Handle Wartime Sex Slavery Issue S. Korea to announce Tues. position on "comfort women" deal with Japan
Faye Gross | 10 January, 2018, 00:33

Moreover, the task force has reported that the 1 billion yen that Japan promised in the agreement to pay as reparations for sex slave victims was agreed upon with social consensus or the consent of the victims themselves.

Japan's Foreign Minister Taro Kono said on Tuesday that Japan can not accept South Korea's new policy position on a deal struck in 2015 between the two countries over Japan's wartime conscription of "comfort women". The term was first suggested by the South Korean government with the intent of expressing the will to "never withdraw from apology".

Japan responded by saying any attempt by South Korea to revise the 2015 deal, struck by a conservative South Korean government, would make relations "unmanageable".

South Korea and Japan announced the deal on December 28, 2015, under which they agreed to "finally and irreversibly" resolve the comfort women issue, while Tokyo apologized for its colonial-era atrocities and agreed to contribute 1 billion yen (US$8.9 million) to a foundation dedicated to supporting the victims.

A Japanese government spokesman says after the two Koreas agreed to resume long-stalled talks that Japan will do what's necessary to keep up pressure on North Korea to give up its weapons programs.

In response, her Japanese counterpart, Taro Kono, called the request "absolutely unacceptable", saying the 2015 agreement settled the issue "finally and irreversibly".

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Seoul's Unification Ministry said earlier North Korea accepted Seoul's offer to hold talks on how to cooperate on next month's Winter Olympics and how to improve overall ties.

"Third, the 2015 agreement on the issue of the Japanese military wartime sex slavery victims can not be a genuine solution as it did not reflect the opinions of the elderly women". However, according to government sources, the administration is not expected to scrap or ask for a renegotiation of the deal immediately, as some have called for.

South Korea failed to remove a statue commemorating comfort women from in front of the Japanese Embassy in Seoul after agreeing to "solve" that issue "in an appropriate manner". Japan sees this as a violation of South Korea's promise not to criticize the country over the comfort women issue in the worldwide community.

Sources familiar with the issue said the remaining survivors refused to accept the money from the foundation, demanding direct compensation from the Japanese government instead, or for other reasons.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga also said several times on January 4 that the agreement "will not move an inch", and deplored South Korea for "moving the goal post every time".

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