Report details history of the ‘comfort women’

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Report details history of the ‘comfort women’

Korea said Wednesday it will distribute to government agencies and post online a report compiled by experts to detail Japan’s wartime sexual slavery of Korean women.

The 216-page report, along with a separate data book, is based on an analysis done by 10 professors and experts seeking to shed light on the suffering of Korean women forced into front-line brothels for Japanese troops during World War II, according to the Ministry of Gender Equality and Family. The report will be officially published Thursday and distributed to central and local government agencies. It will also be put online for public view, the ministry said.

The report details historical facts, testimonies by victims and witnesses, government stances of South Korea and Japan on the matter, and international awareness of wartime brutality.

It, in particular, reaffirmed South Korea’s view on the “comfort women” issue and the need for the Japanese government to take legal responsibility for having been involved in forcing the Korean women into sexual slavery.

Citing previously published data showing that many of the victims were mobilized by private agencies, the report still emphasized that the mobilization was made at Tokyo’s request and that the state should be held accountable.

Historians estimate that up to 200,000 women, mostly from Korea, were forced to work in front-line brothels during World War II. Around 40 surviving South Korean victims are mostly in their late 80s.

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