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‘Comfort women’ statues erected in China

HWASEONG, (Yonhap) -- Two statues of a Korean and Chinese girl were unveiled in China on Saturday, the first monument in China to honor the victims of Japan’s wartime sexual slavery, officials said Saturday.

The statues were erected inside Shanghai Normal University in the Chinese city with the help of donations from citizens of Hwaseong, a city located south of Seoul, according to the Hwaseong municipal authorities.

It is the fifth monument to be built outside of South Korea in honor of the hundreds of thousands of women who were forced into sexual slavery for Japanese troops during World War II. Most of the women were from Korea as the country was under Japanese colonial rule from 1910-45, but some of them were also brought from China, Taiwan and other nations.

The other statues have been erected in the United States, Canada and Australia.

The monument in Shanghai was unveiled during a ceremony attended by representatives from both countries, including Hwaseong Mayor Chae In-seok and the president of Shanghai Normal University.

The statues are of a Korean and Chinese girl sitting side by side in their traditional attires. With their fists clenched, both look into the distance with no expression on their faces.

The Korean girl statue was made by a Korean artist couple, while the Chinese girl statue was made by a Chinese art professor.

The same monument was built inside a park in Seoul last October.

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