Korea’s ‘Comfort Women’ Rally for Apology
By SONJA DECHIAN | Published: DECEMBER 15, 2011
A group of South Korean women and their supporters have held their 1000th protest demanding an apology and compensation from the Japanese government for their treatment as sex slaves during World War Two. The five women, now aged in their 80’s and 90’s, were backed by hundreds of supporters outside the Japanese embassy in Seoul where they have protested every week since 1992.
‘I demand that the ambassador of Japan tell the Japanese government to apologize before we all die,’ said Kim Bok-dong, 85.
Around 200,000 women were forced to work in Japanese military brothels during World War Two. Japan has apologized for the military’s crimes but denies responsibility or legal liability for creating or running brothels.
Protesters gathered around the statue of a young Korean girl in traditional clothing, unveiled to mark the 1000th protest. It was permanently placed across the street from the embassy. Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujimura called the statue ‘extremely regrettable.’
The women said they plan to return next Wednesday for their 1001st protest.