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Japan court upholds compensation denial for Korean WWII slave laborers

[JURIST] Japan's Nagoya High Court [official backgrounder] Thursday upheld a district court's denial of compensation to a group of seven South Korean women who were former slave laborers at Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd.'s aircraft factories during World War II, finding that neither the Japanese government or Mitsubishi were obligated to provide compensation, apology, or unpaid wages because the 1965 Treaty on Basic Relations between Japan and the Republic of Korea [text] renounced South Korean claims to war reparations from Japan. In December 2005, the Tokyo High Court invoked the same 1965 treaty [JURIST report] to deny compensation for unpaid wages by a group of South Koreans forced to work at a Japanese steel mill during World War II. AP has more.

Earlier this month, the Supreme Court of Japan dismissed two cases filed by Chinese victims of Japan's use of biological weapons and the Nanjing Massacre [Wikipedia backgrounder] because the 1972 Joint Communique of the Government of Japan and the Government of the People's Republic of China [text] renounced Chinese claims for war reparations from Japan. Last Wednesday, the UN Committee Against Torture (CAT) [official website] blasted Japan's statute of limitations [JURIST report] for acts "amounting to torture and ill treatment," citing judicial dismissals of petitions by comfort women and slave laborers [JURIST report] on the grounds that Japan's 20-year deadline for filing compensation claims had expired.

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