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Surviving wartime sex slavery victim criticizes advocacy group

All News 23:09 May 07, 2020

SEOUL, May 7 (Yonhap) -- A surviving victim of Japan's wartime sexual enslavement criticized a leading civic group advocating for victims on Thursday, accusing it of failing to manage donations transparently.

Denouncing the Korean Council for Justice and Remembrance for the Issues of Military Sexual Slavery by Japan, Lee Yong-soo, 92, said she will no longer participate in the weekly rally that the group has organized for the past 28 years.

"It is not helpful at all. We don't even know where the donations from the students are spent," she said during a press conference in the southeastern city of Daegu.

Han Kyung-hee, secretary-general of the council, said there was some "misunderstanding."

"The donations have been spent on various activities to resolve the Japanese sexual slavery issue, such as on supporting the victims and publishing related books, and all details are transparently disclosed," Han told Yonhap News Agency.

Historians estimate that up to 200,000 women, mostly from Korea, were forced to work in front-line brothels for Japanese troops during World War II.

Among 240 Koreans officially registered with the government as victims of Japan's sexual slavery, the number of survivors stands at 19.

Lee Yong-soo, one of the few survivors of Japanese sexual slavery when Korea was under colonial rule, holds a press conference in Daegu, 300 kilometers southeast of Seoul, on May 7, 2020. Lee criticized organizers of the Wednesday rallies held every week in front of the Japanese Embassy in Seoul. (Yonhap)


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