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Washington Post: Pressure Mounts for Japanese Prime Minister Abe to Apologize to Comfort Women

Shinzo AbeThe upcoming visit of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has reignited the debate in the United States over comfort women.

Rep Mike Honda (D-Ca) and Rep Grace Meng (D-NY) have sent a letter to the Japanese Ambassador to the United States calling on Abe to use his visit next week to “lay the foundation for healing and humble reconciliation by addressing the historical issues.”

The letter which was also signed by Rep Charles Rangel (D-NY) and Rep Steve Israel (D-NY) does not address the comfort women issue specifically, but Honda has sponsored a bill calling for an apology from the Japanese for what most historians say was the forced prostitution of Korean and other women for the Imperial Japanese imperial Army.

Abe will address a joint session of Congress during his visit.

A former comfort women who is in the United States to protest the visit by Abe called on him to apologize.

Yong Soo Lee, 86, recalls what she lived through to the Washington Post.

“At first the other girls tried to protect me because I was so young,” she said. “I saw the soldiers on them, but the girls put a blanket over me and told me to pretend I was dead so nothing would happen to me. I didn’t know what they meant. I was only 14. I didn’t know anything then.”

You can read more about the opposition to Abe’s visit in the Washington Post.


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