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European Parliament set to adopt resolution on comfort women

All Headlines 10:43 December 09, 2007

BRUSSELS, Dec. 8 (Yonhap) -- The European Parliament is set to adopt a resolution this week, demanding Japan compensate and officially apologize to women forced to serve as sex slaves to Japanese soldiers during World War II, sources here said Saturday.

The move comes about one month after three former comfort women from South Korea, the Philippines and the Netherlands testified before a European Parliament hearing here on Nov. 6 about the atrocities committed against them and their colleagues decades ago.

A resolution by the European Parliament would be the fourth of its kind. The legislatures of the U.S., Canada and the Netherlands adopted similar resolutions earlier this year, demanding that Japan sincerely apologize to those forced into military brothels during the war.

Criticism has been mounting over the Japanese government's failure to properly apologize to "comfort women." Comfort women is a euphemism for sex slaves. Historians say hundreds of thousands of women from Korea and other countries were forced to serve frontline Japanese soldiers during the war. Korea was colonized by Japan between 1910 and 1945.

The draft resolution to be presented to the plenary session of the European Parliament Thursday calls for the Japanese government to acknowledge that it forced more than 200,000 Asian women to work as comfort women during World War II, according to an informed source.

It demands that Japan not only compensate and apologize to the victims but also allow school textbooks to carry stories about the comfort women so that those kind of inhumane acts would not be repeated, the source said.

The resolution "Justice for the Comfort Women" will be presented along with two others, entitled "Eastern Chad" and "Women's Rights in Saudi Arabia", according to the sources.

Diplomatic sources here predict the resolution on comfort women will be passed without difficulty, noting interested political groups have already discussed it in detail.

hdh@yna.co.kr
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