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Ex-sex slave says Osaka mayor’s remark ‘absurd’

  • South Korean former sex slaves Kim Bok-dong, right, and Kil Won-ok, left, reacted to supporters after a meeting in Osaka, western Japan on Saturday. (AP Photo/Kyodo News)

OSAKA, Japan » A former sex slave says a Japanese mayor’s remarks about Japan’s wartime sex slavery are “absurd.”

Kim Bok-dong, who is from South Korea, was referring Saturday to comments by Osaka Mayor Toru Hashimoto. He has angered many by saying Japan’s wartime practice of forcing many Asian women into prostitution for its military was considered necessary.

Kim said Saturday (Friday in Hawaii) that anyone who makes such an “absurd comment” should quit politics. The 87-year-old and another victim, Kil Won-ok, were speaking to their supporters to share with them their painful past as so-called comfort women.

The two canceled their planned meeting Friday with Hashimoto, citing his lack of remorse.

Hashimoto’s comments reignited longtime resentment in neighboring countries that suffered from Japan’s wartime aggression and have complained about the lack of atonement for atrocities.

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