Japan asked for annexation apologyOver 1,000 scholars, writers and attorneys from Korea and Japan asked the Japanese government for a formal apology for the annexation of Korea ahead of its 100-year anniversary next month.
They also asked Japan to declare the annexation treaty, signed Aug. 29, 1910, null and void, which would essentially admit the annexation was wrong.
“With over 1,000 signatures from scholars in both South Korea and Japan saying that the annexation treaty is invalid, we sent a formal statement to the Japanese prime minister today to request a formal apology for the colonization,” said Haruki Wada, emeritus professor at the University of Tokyo and authority on Korea’s modern history, at a press conference in Tokyo yesterday.
“The annexation of Korea itself was an injustice,” said Wada. “The Japanese government should change their interpretation of what happened and say that the treaty was invalid. We should be able to solve the historical conflicts between Korea and Japan through mutual cooperation.”
In May, a group of roughly 200 scholars from Korea and Japan issued a joint declaration saying that Japan’s annexation of Korea was null and void. Yesterday’s request by a much larger group could have more impact in Tokyo.
“The statement has great meaning in that it requested a specific action from the prime minister,” said Yi Tae-jin, emeritus professor of Korean history at Seoul National University, who is one of the signatories on the request.
Japanese Prime Minister Kan Naoto’s cabinet secretary said last month that an apology was being considered.
By Park So-young [firstname.lastname@example.org]
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