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Japan court denies compensation to WWII Korean slave laborers

[JURIST] A Japanese district court Wednesday rejected demands for compensation by 22 South Korean women, as well as the surviving relatives of other women, who were forced to work [JURIST news archive] at a Japanese military hardware factory during World War II. Although the Toyama District Court recognized that the women were brought to Japan and forced to work at the factory, the judge ruled that war-related financial settlements had already been reached under various peace and compensation treaties, such as the 1965 Treaty on Basic Relations between Japan and the Republic of Korea [text]. The plaintiffs, at the time between the ages of 12 and 19 years old, were brought to Japan under the pretense that they would receive higher education. The women were then forced to work without pay and without sufficient food. The plaintiffs were seeking approximately 100 million yen ($862,000 USD).

In May a similar lawsuit brought by seven South Korean women was dismissed [JURIST report], with the court citing the 1965 treaty. In June the Japanese Sapporo High Court rejected a lawsuit [JURIST report] brought by Chinese plaintiffs who alleged that they were forced to work as slave laborers in mines and factories during the war. In that case the court ruled that 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. AP has more.

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