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HOME  > Past issues  > 2017 February 22 - 28  > Abe gov’t should hold talks with Seoul to improve bilateral ties
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2017 February 22 - 28 [POLITICS]

Abe gov’t should hold talks with Seoul to improve bilateral ties

February 22, 2017
One month has passed since the Abe government recalled the Japanese ambassador to South Korea in response to the placement of a statue of a Korean girl symbolizing Japan’s wartime sex slaves (euphemistically referred to as “comfort women”) in front of the Japanese Consulate General in Pusan. What is needed to break the current deadlock in the bilateral relations?

At the foreign ministerial conference in December 2015, Japan and South Korea agreed on measures to be taken for the settlement of the “comfort women” issue. In the agreement, Tokyo admitted to the Japanese military’s “involvement” in the sex slavery system and stated that it is “painfully aware of its responsibilities”.

The Japanese Communist Party 27th Congress resolution points out that this agreement is just a “starting point” to achieve a resolution of the issue and that a final settlement will be achieved only when all former “comfort women” regain their human dignity. The JCP has repeatedly urged the Japanese government to work hard to resolve the matter in cooperation with the South Korean government.

Japan is the perpetrator of this heinous war crime. Taking this fact into serious consideration, the Abe administration needs to make sincere efforts to gain Koreans’ trust.

Even if setbacks occur with regard to the bilateral agreement, it is not appropriate for Japan to recall its ambassador indefinitely. The Abe government should hold talks with its counterpart to resolve the issue in a calm manner.

Past related article:
> PM Abe’s diplomatic policy reaches deadlock [January 9, 2017]
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