On the Agreement on the “Comfort Women Issue” between South Korea and Japan 

The Korean American Civic Empowerment expresses its grave concerns surrounding the agreement on the “Comfort Women” issues between South Korea and Japan. The agreement does not contain the apology nor the reparation that the comfort women survivors have been asking for. No comfort women survivors will accept the agreement as the final resolution of the issue.

Ever since January 1992, comfort women survivors have been asking for a sincere and unequivocal apology and official reparations from the government of Japan. Also in 2007, the U.S. House of Representatives unanimously passed H.Res. 121, which urges the government of Japan to: (1) formally acknowledge, apologize, and accept historical responsibility for its Imperial Armed Force’s coercion of young women into sexual slavery (comfort women); (2) have this official and public apology presented by the Prime Minister of Japan; (3) refute any claims that the sexual enslavement and trafficking of the comfort women never occurred; and (4) educate current and future generations about this crime while following the international community’s recommendations with respect to the comfort women.

However, through this agreement, the government of Japan is simply repeating another round of ambiguous and equivocal apologies and establishing another foundation for indirect reparations to avoid any acknowledgement or legal responsibility on the comfort women atrocity. Also by the agreement, Japan is asking that the statute of a girl in front of the Japanese Embassy in Seoul be removed. If the apology were sincere as claimed, Japan would have not requested the statue be removed.

To be a sincere apology and acknowledgement on Japanese government’s responsibility on the comfort women, the Cabinet of Japan should approve the apology by the Prime Minister and the apology should be unequivocal and unambiguous. Also the reparations should be made directly to the victims as the legal acknowledgement of taking responsibility. Further, the statue should stand where it is as a symbol of peace.

As the leading organization in support of the comfort women survivors in the United States, KACE will continue to educate future generations about the comfort women issue and to support other organizations involved in working for the comfort women survivors.

KACE Statement on Korea-Japan Agreement on Comfort Women

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