Few issues are so sensitive in Japan as the ‘comfort women’, the usage of Asian women in captivity held in occupied territories during the second world war by Japanese soldiers as ‘sex slaves.’
These practices were held in occupied territories in the Philippines, South Korea, and China and still cause outrage now in all countries. Japan has never fully recognized the mistreatment of these women according to victims.
Whenever one of the cities which suffered from these atrocities during the second world war wants to remember those times, Japan always acts furiously.
Back in January, Japan recalled its ambassador to South Korea when a comfort women statue was put up near its consulate in the southern city of Busan. Japan and South Korea have since agreed the issue of would be “irreversibly resolved” if Japanese would apologize and set up a fund to help victims.
Over the weekend, Mr. Ed Lee, the mayor of San Francisco, signed a resolution that accepted the transfer of a statue showing ‘comfort women’ (three figures holding hands that are representing girls from South-Korea, China, and the Philippines) as official city property.
San Francisco has 18 sister cities with which it shares a ‘special relationship.’ One of those cities is the Japanese city of Osaka, where the mayor reacted, as was expected, furious to this news.
Osaka Mayor Hirofumi Yoshimura immediately stated: “This is highly regrettable. The relationship of trust has completely been destroyed."
<blockquote class="twitter-tweet" data-lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Those who helped make the San Francisco "Comfort Women" statue possible are now sharing this video. It's the first such statue showing a Korean woman and Chinese and Filipino women as well. <a href="https://t.co/SafVkHU5Gw">https://t.co/SafVkHU5Gw</a></p>— Greg DeRego (@gregderego) <a href="https://twitter.com/gregderego/status/934490130374475776?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">November 25, 2017</a></blockquote>
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In the official accompanying plaque, it stated that the San Francisco sculpture depicts the estimated 200,000 women from Asian-Pacific countries who were forced into sexual slavery from 1931 until the war ended in 1945.