‘Comfort women’ memorial day will be designated

The Ministry of Gender and Equality and Family on Tuesday said that it will soon designate a day to commemorate the suffering endured by victims of sexual slavery perpetrated by the imperial Japanese military.Reporting its plans to President Park Geun-hye, the ministry said a pool of experts will be invited to select a date soon in order to have it observed this year.

“We’ll make greater efforts to let the world know about the issue of sexual slavery under Japanese military rule, which again came to the attention of the world during a recent international cartoon festival,” the ministry said, referring to the Angouleme International Comics Festival held in France between Jan. 30 and Feb. 2.

The Korean Council for the Women Drafted for Military Sexual Slavery by Japan, an NGO, already observes Aug. 14 as a commemorative day.

The imperial Japanese military took women from occupied countries and forced them used them to be sex slaves for its soldiers.

Somewhere between 20,000 and 200,000 were victimized by Japan’s state-forced prostitution.

Victims were mostly from Korea, China, the Philippines and other occupying countries in Asia.

The comics featured at the Angouleme festival will also receive support for another international tour.

A total of 20 comics by Korean cartoonists and four videos were presented at the festival in France. Japan’s failed attempt to obstruct the Korean exhibition made sweeping headlines in Korea.

The ministry will be involved in organizing festivals, conferences and contests related to the issue.

Also, it will continue to build up an archive of the victims’ accounts, laying the groundwork for its registration to the UNESCO Memory of the World Register by 2017.

By the Korea Times
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