South Korean court refuses to review Second World War treaty with Japan

SEOUL, Korea, Republic Of - A South Korean court on Wednesday refused to review a complaint over the 1965 treaty between Japan and South Korea that Tokyo uses to deny compensation for South Korean victims of Second World War-era slavery, a boost to recent efforts by the neighbours to improve bad ties.

See Full Article

Seoul's constitutional Court said that the accord was never meant to serve as a standard for providing individual compensation.

The court's decision came in response to a complaint filed by a woman who said the treaty blocks her right to seek more compensation because of her late father's wartime slavery. Japan colonized the Korean Peninsula from 1910 to 1945.

The 1965 treaty, which was accompanied by more than $800 million in economic aid and loans from Tokyo to Seoul, came as the South worked to rebuild an economy devastated by the 1950-53 Korean War. The treaty declared all compensation issues between the countries on property, rights and interests as "completely and finally" settled.

Relations between the countries, both democracies and strong U.S. allies, have been bad since the 2012 inauguration of Japanese Prime Minster Shinzo Abe, whose nationalistic stance on Japan's wartime past has worried and angered Seoul.

Although the South Korean court has no binding power on international agreements, Seoul could have been obligated to seek a new deal with Tokyo had the court ruled the treaty unconstitutional, analysts said. The decision, however, won't likely stop lawsuits by South Koreans seeking compensation from Japan's government and businesses.

Differences on Japan's responsibility over Koreans enslaved before and during the Second World War, including Korean women forced to provide sex to Japanese soldiers at front-line military brothels, have been a major source of friction between Seoul and Tokyo.

During a November summit in Seoul, South Korean President Park Geun-hye and Abe agreed to try to resolve the sex slaves matter.

The Japanese government has never directly compensated South Korean victims of wartime slavery but set up a fund in 1995 to make payments to former military sex slaves from private donations. Japanese leaders have previously apologized over the former sex slaves, but many South Koreans see the statements and past efforts at private compensation as insufficient.

Critics say Japan didn't admit to involvement in the military-run brothels until after the 1965 treaty. South Korean officials have also argued that the treaty covered only economic and property claims between the countries, not war crimes or human rights issues.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Fellony the felon hit with new felony charges

    World News Toronto Sun
    Fellony the serial felon has been hit with new felony charges, according to reports. Fellony Hudson, 22, of Salem, Ore., has been charged with felony kidnapping, felony eluding, felony possession of a stolen vehicle and various other misdemeanors after cops chased the ironically-named man across state lines last week. Source
  • Trump lashes out at fellow Republicans in Twitter tirade

    World News Toronto Sun
    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump is expressing his frustration with fellow Republicans, saying they “do very little to protect their President.” In one of several tweets issued Sunday afternoon and evening, Trump said the lack of support happens even with “some that were carried over the line on my back. Source
  • Chainsaw-wielding man wounds five in Switzerland

    World News Toronto Sun
    BERLIN — An unkempt man armed with a chainsaw wounded five people Monday at an office building in the northern Swiss city of Schaffhausen and then fled, police said. A manhunt was on for him. Police were alerted to the attack at 10:39 a.m. Source
  • Pregnant woman stabbed multiple times at her Montreal home

    Canada News CTV News
    MONTREAL - Police say a 33-year-old pregnant woman was stabbed several times early Monday morning in her home in the city's north end. Authorities say the victim was attacked by her partner, who fled the scene when police arrived. Source
  • At least 12 dead in car bombing in eastern Pakistan

    World News CBC News
    Pakistani officials say a car bomb has killed 12 people and wounded 25 in the eastern city of Lahore. A statement from Malik Mohammad Ahmed, a spokesman for government of the eastern Punjab province, said the car bomb struck an old vegetable market in the neighbourhood of Kot Lakhpat on Lahore's outskirts on Monday. Source
  • Police-reported pot offences decline in 2016: StatsCan

    Canada News CTV News
    OTTAWA -- The number of cannabis-related offences reported to police was down again last year, for the fifth time in a row. Statistics Canada says there were about 55,000 offences related to marijuana reported to police in 2016, which is about 6,000 fewer than reported the year before, despite the fact that overall, the percentage of Canadians who consume the drug has gone up over time. Source
  • Jared Kushner says he has ‘nothing to hide’ on Russia

    World News Toronto Sun
    WASHINGTON — Senior White House adviser Jared Kushner denied Monday that he colluded with Russians in the course of President Donald Trump’s successful White House bid, declaring in a statement ahead of interviews with congressional committees that he has “nothing to hide. Source
  • Montreal newborn fights for life after mom repeatedly stabbed

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    A newborn infant is fighting for its life in a Montreal hospital Monday morning after being delivered by caesarian section after its 33-year-old mother was repeatedly stabbed. Police say that while the mother's condition has stabilized, the child is in critical condition. Source
  • Trump has no immediate plans to fill vacant White House job of 'first pet'

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- Politically ambitious pups and kittens: Put your resumes aside. The job of first pet -- an enviable White House gig with luxurious live-in privileges, after-hours access to the president and guaranteed positive press coverage -- is not currently available. Source
  • B.C. teen completes 12 hour swim across English Channel for charity

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    KELOWNA, B.C. — While many teens spend summers relaxing, a 17-year-old from Kelowna, B.C., has been pushing her body and mind to the limits and raising thousands of dollars for charity in the process. Emily Epp swam across the English Channel earlier this month in a gruelling trek that took nearly 12 hours to complete. Source