THE left-leaning Gabriela party-list group yesterday asked President Rodrigo Duterte to press Japan into recognizing and making a formal state apology to the dead and surviving comfort women who were brutally enslaved during the Pacific War annexation of the Philippines.
Gabriela Reps. Emmi de Jesus and Arlene Brosas filed House Resolution (HR) No. 213 to mark the 71st anniversary of the surrender of the Japanese Imperial Army and end of the Second World War today.
The resolution is expresses “the sense of the House of Representatives that the Philippine government urges the government of Japan to formally acknowledge, apologize for and accept its responsibility over the sexual slavery of young women commonly known as comfort women by the Japanese Imperial Army during World War II and provide compensation to the victims.”
"More than two decades after the Filipino comfort women started demanding an official apology and legal redress from Japan to correct the unimaginable suffering they experienced in the hands of the Japanese Imperial Army, sadly the only step taken was to recognize this as a mere social problem in 1990, then admit its involvement and express remorse in 1993 only to have other officials try to reverse and water down the original 'sincere apologies' and afterwards deny obligation to provide direct compensation. This is a long and continuing injustice to our thousands of victimized lolas. The issue is pressing as their numbers decrease due to old age," de Jesus said after they filed the resolution in memory of the 80 claimants who passed away since surfacing 24 years ago and organized under the organization Lila Pilipina.
De Jesus said President Duterte should take steps to make official representations with Japan to open formal state-to-state talks that other claimant nations such as China and Korea have made and include the comfort women in the official processes.