South Korea court dismisses 'comfort women' lawsuit, contradicts earlier ruling
A South Korean court on Wednesday upheld Japan’s state immunity to dismiss a lawsuit raised by a group of women who were forced to work in Japanese wartime brothels, contradicting a ruling in a separate earlier case that ordered Tokyo to compensate victims.
Remnants of Japan’s 1910-45 colonial rule of the Korean peninsula remain contentious for both sides, with many surviving “comfort women” — a Japanese euphemism for the sex abuse victims — demanding Tokyo’s formal apology and compensation.
Diplomatic tension flared in January when a judge at the Seoul Central District Court ruled in favor of other women in a separate case, ordering Japan to pay compensation for the first time. That verdict had drawn a rebuke from Tokyo which says the issue was settled under a 1965 treaty and a 2015 deal.