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Rep. Royce Applauds Unanimous Adoption of H.Res.121 "Comfort Women" Resolution

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Washington, July 30, 2007 | comments
Today, the House of Representatives passed by unanimous consent, H.Res.121. The "Comfort Women" Resolution, which has enjoyed widespread support throughout Congress, was praised by Congressman Royce, an original cosponsor of the resolution, who offered the following statement:

"Beginning in the 1930s, the Imperial Government of Japan orchestrated the enslavement of up to 200,000 young Korean women. Many were abducted from their homes and sent to Japanese military brothels. Others were lured from their homes under the false pretense of employment. In what was one of the worst cases of human trafficking of the 20th century, the trauma that these women suffered drove many to conceal their past, either too embarrassed or scared to speak of it. The surviving victims deserve the recognition that they so desire.

To this day, Japan maintains that this issue is closed and the sufferings of individuals inflicted in the war have already been dealt by treaties normalizing its ties with other Asian countries. Some have pointed to Prime Minister Abe's April 27th statement as a formal apology, yet both the Prime Minister himself and Japan's Foreign Ministry went on record to disavow any alleged apology. It is important that the Japanese government confronts this dark part of Japanese history.

This resolution is as much about today as it is about yesterday. The world's strength to oppose killing today is made greater by accountability, for actions present, but also past. It's weakened by denial of accountability and obfuscation of past acts. History is a continuum that affects today and tomorrow. It's much harder to get tomorrow right if we get yesterday wrong."

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