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Korean, Japanese Scholars Declare 1910 Treaty ‘Invalid’

Korean, Japanese Scholars Declare 1910 Treaty ‘Invalid’

Posted July. 29, 2010 15:21,   


A group of Korean and Japanese scholars issued a joint statement Wednesday declaring null and void the 1910 bilateral annexation treaty that ceded the Korean Peninsula to Japan.

They also urged the Japanese prime minister to make an official apology over Japan’s past colonization of Korea.

The scholars included Yuhan University President Kim Young-ho, Seoul National University Professor Emeritus Lee Tae-jin, and University of Tokyo Professor Emeritus Wada Haruki. They held a news conference in Tokyo announcing that 1,118 intellectuals -- 587 Koreans and 531 Japanese -- signed the statement.

Prior to the signing, they met Japanese National Strategy Minister Satoshi Arai and Yutaka Banno, director-general at the international department of the Democratic Party of Japan, to deliver their request for an official apology to Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan August 29, which marks the centennial year of the annexation treaty’s signing.

Two hundred Korean and Japanese scholars had announced the same joint statement May 10. This time, however, the number of signatories shot up to 1,000 and urged the Japanese prime minister for an apology.

Lee said, “That more than 1,000 people from both countries participated in the signing event is really surprising. This shows that the global commitment of Asian intellectuals goes beyond issues related to Asians.”

Haruki said, “In the past, people interested in inter-Korean relations participated. It is really meaningful that 228 Korean history majors and researchers attended this time.”