Japanese mayor: Wartime sex slaves were necessary, Oxford exploitation trial: Guilty verdicts over child rapes
May 15, 2013 Comments Off on Japanese mayor: Wartime sex slaves were necessary, Oxford exploitation trial: Guilty verdicts over child rapes
Japanese mayor: Wartime sex slaves were necessary
By MALCOLM FOSTER Associated Press 5/14/13
TOKYO (AP) — An outspoken nationalist mayor said the Japanese military’s forced prostitution of Asian women before and during World War II was necessary to “maintain discipline” in the ranks and provide rest for soldiers who risked their lives in battle.
The comments made Monday are already raising ire in neighboring countries that bore the brunt of Japan’s wartime aggression and have long complained that Japan has failed to fully atone for wartime atrocities.
Toru Hashimoto, the young, brash mayor of Osaka who is co-leader of an emerging conservative political party, also said that U.S. troops currently based in southern Japan should patronize the local sex industry more to help reduce rapes and other assaults.
Hashimoto told reporters on Monday that there wasn’t clear evidence that the Japanese military had coerced women to become what are euphemistically called “comfort women” before and during World War II….
Historians say up to 200,000 women, mainly from the Korean Peninsula and China, were forced to provide sex for Japanese soldiers in military brothels.
China’s Foreign Ministry criticized the mayor’s comments and saw them as further evidence of a rightward drift in Japanese politics under Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.
“We are appalled and indignant about the Japanese politician’s comments boldly challenging humanity and historical justice,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said at a daily media briefing. “The way they treat the past will determine the way Japan walks toward the future. On what choice Japan will make, the Asian neighbors and the international community will wait and see.”
Asked about a photo of Abe posing in a fighter jet with the number 731 — the number of a notorious, secret Japanese unit that performed chemical and biological experiments on Chinese in World War II — Hong again urged Japan not to whitewash history so as to improve relations with countries that suffered under Japanese occupation.
“There is a mountain of definitive iron-hard evidence for the crimes they committed in the Second World War. We hope Japan will face and contemplate their history of aggression and treat it correctly,” Hong said.
Abe posed, thumbs up, in the aircraft during a weekend visit to northeastern Japan.
South Korea’s Foreign Ministry expressed disappointment over what it called a senior Japanese official’s serious lack of historical understanding and respect for women’s rights. It asked Japan’s leaders to reflect on their country’s imperial past, including grave human rights violations, and correct anachronistic historical views….
Oxford exploitation trial: Guilty verdicts over child rapes 14 May 2013 Seven members of a sex grooming ring have been convicted of abusing children from Oxford.
An Old Bailey jury heard six girls were drugged and suffered sadistic abuse while aged between 11 and 15.
The court heard victims were plied with alcohol and drugs before being forced to perform sex acts. Some had also been beaten, burnt and threatened.
Nine men had denied charges including rape, arranging child prostitution and trafficking between 2004 and 2012.
Two were acquitted of all charges….
The abuse began in Oxford but some of the victims would be later taken around the country to be offered to other men who were in contact with the gang.
Victim: “I was scared to say no”
The court heard how the men identified vulnerable girls for abuse then groomed each one of them until they were under the control of the gang….
The Old Bailey was told the key members of the group used and abused the six victims in a systematic and organised sex trafficking ring over eight years until their arrest in 2012.
The court heard how the men identified vulnerable girls for abuse and then groomed each one of them until they were under the control of the gang.
They were then each either abused by the men themselves, given to their friends or offered at a price to others who were not on trial.
The youngest girl to be targeted was 11-years-old. The girls were mostly chosen because their unsettled or troubled lives made them easier to manipulate….
One of the victims had complained to police twice but no one was charged.
A care home manager, who was later sacked, refused to pay her taxi fare when she returned after running away and the 14-year-old was driven back to Oxford where she was raped….