The Japanese government on Thursday approved a history textbook with nearly identical content to one that soured Korea-Japan relations in 2001 by whitewashing the island nation's wartime atrocities.
The book says Japan annexed Korea to ensure Japan's national security as well as to protect democracy in Japan. It claims the aim of colonial policy was modernization and makes no mention of the fact that the Imperial Army forced young women from all over Asia into sexual slavery.
Korea's Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade in a statement said, "We strongly protest against the Japanese government's approval of a history textbook based on wrong historical perception that justifies and prettifies the wrongdoings of the past. We demand a fundamental correction of the textbook."