By Mio Sakaida in Seoul
On Sept. 11, ROK Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-hwa commented on moves by Korean workers who were conscripted to work for Japanese companies during World War II to seek compensation. She said: “As a democratic state respecting the rule of law, we must respect the court’s ruling.” The ROK Supreme Court is currently trying three such cases.
The Supreme Court ruled in 2012 that “individuals’ right to claim compensation has not expired,” so the court may pronounce a verdict that contradicts the Japanese and ROK governments’ position that this issue “has been resolved.”
Kang made the above remarks in response to a question on the forced laborers at the Seoul Foreign Correspondents’ Club. She first stated that “this issue is being examined by the Supreme Court, so it is difficult for the government to make a comment (at this stage).” She added, however, that “we will study possible ways to manage the (Japan-ROK) relationship.” (Abridged)