South Korea Tuesday denounced the Japanese consul general based in Atlanta, the United States, for his recent remarks disparaging Korean women who were forced into sexual service for front-line Japanese soldiers during World War II.
In a recent media interview, Takashi Shinozuka, the consul general of Japan in Atlanta, urged the Brookhaven city council of Atlanta to cancel its decision to allow a memorial symbolizing the Korean victims, euphemistically called comfort women, to be built.
South Korean foreign ministry spokesman Cho June-hyuck (Yonhap)
Up to 200,000 women, mostly from Korea, are believed to have been forced to work at front-line brothels for the imperialist Japanese army during the war in which Korea was under colonial control of Japan.
The Japanese consul general refuted the history, saying there's no evidence, and called the comfort women paid prostitutes.
"If it's true, the remarks are something that I cannot believe was made by a high-ranking official," foreign ministry official Cho June-hyuck said in a press briefing. He said the ministry is currently in the process of verifying the reported remarks by the consul general.
"They are very inappropriate remarks that run counter to the international community's common recognition that the comfort women issue is an act of wartime sexual violence and a grave human rights violation problem," the spokesman also noted.
After verifying the report, the ministry will take necessary steps such as conveying a diplomatic complaint to Japan or demanding the withdrawal of the remarks, he said. (Yonhap)