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2014 February 26 - March 4 TOP3 [POLITICS]

JCP opposes revision of gov’t statement offering apology to ‘comfort women’ victims

February 26&27, 2014
Japanese Communist Party Diet Policy Commission Chair Kokuta Keiji on February 26 at a news conference expressed his opposition to an attempt to set up a body in the Diet to “re-examine” the Kono Statement which admits to the Imperial Japanese Army’s involvement in operating the sexual slavery (“comfort women”) system during World War II.

This move came after Yamada Hiroshi, a representative of the right-wing opposition Japan Restoration Party, denounced the government official statement at a Lower House Budget Committee meeting on February 20.

In 1993, based on the testimonies of former “comfort women”, then Chief Cabinet Secretary Kono Yohei issued a statement that acknowledges the Japanese military involvement in sex slavery and expressed the state’s apology to victims.

At the Diet meeting, Yamada questioned then Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Ishihara Nobuo about how the statement was compiled at the time. Ishihara replied that they did not conduct a follow-up investigation to verify those testimonies.

Yamada called for Prime Minister Abe Shinzo to revise the statement between the government and the Diet. A few days later, Abe reportedly expressed his “gratitude” to Yamada for his request.

Kokuta pointed out that this move is associated with an attempt to undermine the 1995 Murayama Statement released by then Prime Minister Murayama Tomiichi, which expresses “deep remorse” and “heartfelt apology” for Japan’s past aggression and its colonial rule over other Asian countries.

Noting that Japan’s judiciary has already acknowledged the fact that those women were forced to serve Japanese soldiers as sex slaves against their will, Kokuta stressed that the JCP will make every effort to frustrate the intention to justify Japan’s war of aggression.

Past related articles:
> Evidence of ‘comfort women’ coercion exists: Gov’t admits [January 19, 2013]
> ‘Comfort women’ trial questions Abe gov’t’s historical interpretation [January 17, 2014]
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