“It’s important to clearly resolve the comfort women issue in a way that meets the expectations of the victims or the international community. If we clearly resolve the comfort women issue, in that itself, there will be no reason to discuss it again.”
“What’s important is to restore the honor of the 50 victims before they pass away, and for the two countries’ governments, through such means, to work to create a good opportunity to move to a new relationship.”
- Yun Byung-se, Foreign Minister of Korea
SEOUL, June 23 (Korea Bizwire) — The dispute between South Korea and Japan over Tokyo’s sexual enslavement of Korean women for Japan’s World War II soldiers should be resolved in a way that satisfies the victims, Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se said.
Yun was in Tokyo for two days until Monday to mark the 50th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic relations. During the visit, he held talks with Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida and attended an anniversary reception hosted by the South Korean Embassy in Tokyo.
His visit was the first by a South Korean foreign minister in more than four years, raising hope for a thaw in the two countries’ relations that have been strained over history and territorial disputes.
South Korea demands Japan acknowledge state responsibility for the war crime, while Japan insists the issue was settled under the normalization treaty of 1965. Only 50 South Korean survivors remain.
Marking the anniversary in their respective countries on Monday, President Park Geun-hye and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe also called for an improvement in bilateral ties.