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Japan demands California town halts memorial to WWII ‘comfort women’

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Japan's consulate general in Los Angeles is demanding that government officials in one California community put a stop to plans to erect a monument to World War II-era South Koreans who were forcibly used as "comfort women" to Japanese troops.

The Japanese authorities say the statue shouldn't be displayed on public property, and that it does not adequately represent the nation's views of the issue, United Press International reported. Japan said the issue of forcing South Korean women into sexual slavery had already been settled in a 1965 treaty, UPI reported.

Kuni Sato, a press secretary for Japan's foreign ministry, said the nation had resolved the "comfort women" matter by providing compensation to rape victims who survived the ordeal. Not all the women accepted the funds, however, seeing it Japan's way of dodging responsibility and quietly settling, UPI reported.

The memorial — an effort of a U.S.-South Korean group — is slated for public park lands in Glendale.

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