Japan has lodged a protest with South Korea over the neighboring country’s plan to create a memorial day to commemorate former Korean women forced into Japanese wartime brothels, a government source said Thursday.
Seoul’s intention is against the spirit of the bilateral deal struck in December 2015, in which they agreed that the “comfort women” issue was “resolved finally and irreversibly,” the source said.
The administration of South Korean President Moon Jae In, who has pledged to review the agreement since he took office in May, announced Wednesday the country will establish such a memorial day in 2018.
Dated the same day, the Japanese government protested to South Korea through diplomatic channels in Seoul, the source said.
“As we have been pursuing a future-oriented Japan-South Korea relationship, we cannot allow (Seoul) to cover old ground,” a Japanese Foreign Ministry official said.
The South Korean government has also announced it will launch an institution to study the comfort women issue in 2019 and set up a history museum on it in 2020.