Footage shows com­fort women

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - WORLD -

SEOUL — South Korea has re­leased rare video footage of Korean women forced to work in Ja­panese mil­i­tary broth­els dur­ing World War II, the first time mov­ing im­ages have been shown of the com­fort women.

A re­search team from Seoul Na­tional Univer­sity found the footage, which was filmed in 1944 by a US sol­dier, in the United States Na­tional Ar­chives af­ter a two-year hunt.

“South Korea has not had its own data on com­fort women and (has) been re­ly­ing on Ja­panese and Amer­i­can data,” said Kang Sung-hyun, an aca­demic on the team. “It is cru­cial for us.”

The 18-sec­ond blackand-white clip shows seven women lined up out­side a brick house, be­ing ques­tioned by Chi­nese sol­diers. The women were found by US-China al­lied forces in China’s Yun­nan prov­ince, the re­search team said.

Su Zhil­iang, di­rec­tor of the “com­fort women” re­search cen­ter at Shang­hai Nor­mal Univer­sity, said that about 400,000 women in Asia were forced into pros­ti­tu­tion by the Ja­panese army dur­ing the war.

South Korean ex­perts said that there may have been as many as 200,000 Korean vic­tims.

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