SEOUL, June 23 -- South Korea on Monday summoned Japan 's ambassador in Seoul to protest against Tokyo's review on the past apology for its wartime sexual enslavement of Korean women.
Vice Foreign Minister Cho Tae-yong called in Koro Bessho, Japanese Ambassador to Seoul, to complain about the re-examination on the so-called Kono Statement, which acknowledged and apologized for its wartime sex slavery, according to the South Korean foreign ministry.
Cho said the Abe cabinet must clearly know the point that its credibility and reputation will be damaged when it seeks to undermine the Kono Statement, noting that the coercion of the " comfort women" issue is a historical truth which has been acknowledged all around the world.
The comfort women is a euphemism for young women, mostly Koreans, coerced into the sexual slavery for the Japanese Imperial Army during the World War II. Almost all the victims already passed away, with only 54 alive in South Korea.
The summon came after the Japanese government, led by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, announced the result of its review on the Kono Statement last Friday.
The results said the South Korean government intervened in the wording of the Kono statement, indicating that it was the consequence of political dealings behind the closed doors.
The Kono Statement refers to an official apology made in 1993 by then Chief Cabinet Secretary Yohei Kono, who acknowledged the imperialistic Japan was involved in the recruitment of more than 200,000 young women, mostly Koreans, and forced them to serve in military brothels.
South Korea has demanded that the Abe cabinet make an official apology and compensation for the victims, but Japan has claimed all the issues related to its 1910-45 colonial rule of Korea settled down with a 1965 treaty that normalized the bilateral diplomatic relations.