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SK, Japan See Improvements on Talks About the Reconciliation and Healing Foundation

by YuGee / Aug 11, 2016 06:42 AM EDT
Some South Koreans do not approve of the agreement between South Korea and Japan on the comfort women issue. (Photo by Chung Sung Jun/Getty Images)

In hopes of aiding Korean women who were sexually abused by Japanese troops during its colonial reign decades ago, South Korea and Japan launched the Reconciliation and Healing Foundation last month. On August 9, the two countries made substantial progress in their talks regarding the continuing measures for the said foundation.

The Korea Herald reported that the development was caused by the meeting held in Seoul between the Director-General of the South Korean Foreign Ministry'Northeast Asian Affairs Bureau Chung Byung Won and his Japanese counterpart Kenji Kanasugi.

The Reconciliation and Healing Foundation was created after a deal between the two countries was finalized in December. It aims to support the victims of sexual slavery, also known as comfort women, during the Japanese occupation of Korea. Japan committed to donating 1 billion yen (US $9.8 million) to the foundation.

The recent talks discussed things related to the promised contribution of Japan to the foundation and how the organization will implement various projects that cater to the needs of the victims.

An anonymous insider told the reporters, "Significant progress was made. We will report the results of today's meeting to our higher-ups and accordingly take follow-up measures."

The source further added, "We had in-depth internal talks on the general direction of the business to be implemented through the foundation. Based on that, we had talks with Japan and they were quite good ones. When the foundation was launched, its chief said that related projects will be carried out in a way to help victims regain their dignity and make it possible to heal their scars. She promised to meet all of them one by one to provide tailored support, and with that in mind, we had talks with Japan."

Last year, the deal between South Korea and Japan on the establishment of the foundation earned praises from the international community, however, it also attracted criticisms from some victims and civic groups who claimed that the South Korean government agreed to the deal without earlier consultation with the victims. 

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