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Japan`s foreign minister says resolution of comfort women issue unlikely this year

Japan`s foreign minister says resolution of comfort women issue unlikely this year

Posted December. 03, 2015 10:13,   


Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida says the resolution of the Japanese military`s comfort women issue will be unlikely within the year-end.

At an interview with Nikkei reported Wednesday, Kishida spoke about the agreement made at the Korea-Japan summit on November 2, saying, "What was agreed upon (between the two heads of state) was that they will continue negotiations. Neither said it would be within the end of the year." President Park Geun-hye has repeatedly said she hopes the comfort woman issue to be resolved within the year.

"We should make efforts based on the agreement made at the summit, but negotiations are continuing and nothing has been decided yet," Kishida said, implying that there are yet many differing opinions between the two countries.

On if he could have direct talks with Korean Foreign Minister Yoon Byung-se, Kishida said, "There are many channels of negotiations. This includes foreign affairs ministerial talks and also talks at other levels."

On the content of talks, Kishida says nothing has been decided. Asked if a political decision is needed to solve the comfort women issue, he said, "Talks are continuing. I cannot say what determinations are needed before details are decided." On if reaching agreement requires Korea`s promise that it will be the final resolution, he says that nothing has been decided including which will be final."

"Both countries should present their own thoughts and make efforts. If we don`t sweat together, we won`t be able to reach conclusion," Kishida said, requesting Korea to also actively make proposals to resolve the issue.

When asked for the prospect of expanding follow-up activities for the Asian Women Fund project, which was promoted in the 1990s by Japan, Kishida said, "There are various opinions from a variety of related parties, but nothing concrete has been decided between Japan and Korea."