Two elderly South Korean victims of Japan's sexual slavery during World War II will attend an official government ceremony next week marking the country's liberation from the 1910-45 colonial rule, officials said Thursday.
The Ministry of Interior and Safety said it will be the first time that the "comfort women" attend an official Liberation Day ceremony at the invitation of the government, though two victims attended a luncheon in 2010 after the main ceremony.
Liberation Day, which falls on Aug. 15, marks Korea's 1945 independence from Japan's harsh colonial rule, during which Koreans were banned from using their own language at schools and forced to adopt Japanese names. Hundreds of thousands of Koreans were also mobilized as forced laborers and sex slaves.
The sexual slavery issue is one of the biggest thorns in relations between South Korea and Japan. (Yonhap