UNESCO Listing of Documents on Former Sex Slaves Postponed

  • By Lee Dong-hwi

    November 01, 2017 11:24

    UNESCO has delayed its review of a request from eight countries including Korea and China to register documents related to Japan's wartime sexual enslavement of women on the Memory of the World Register, the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism said Tuesday.

    UNESCO appears to have bowed to pressure from Japan, one of the largest contributors to its funds, and to this day denies the wartime government had anything to do with the atrocity.

    Participants hold pickets in front of the Japanese Embassy in Seoul last week during a weekly protest on behalf of women forced into sexual slavery during World War II. /Yonhap

    The International Advisory Committee of UNESCO made the decision in Paris early this week. It urged Korea and Japan to hold additional talks in order to ease the conflict.

    UNESO agreed last month to postpone the decision for four years if there is any disagreement regarding the Memory of the World Register.

    The documents include around 2,700 court papers and statements from victims. Japan accounts for 10 percent of UN funding, second only to the U.S., which accounts for 22 percent.

    When documents related to the Rape of Nanjing were included on the UNESCO register in 2015, Japan refused to pay its financial contribution until the end of that year. It has taken the same step this year, apparently in order to flex its muscle over the sex slavery issue.

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