2014/04/04

[資料・英語] 


この記事は既に下の記事と差し替えられた模様。googleのキャッシュを魚拓にとった。

Objectors expected at council over comfort women statue plan

ARTICLE | TUE, 01/04/2014 - 15:29 | BY PETER LYNCH

Strathfield councillors are expecting petitions from the Japanese community and pleas from Koreans and Chinese at a meeting tonight over a controversial plan to erect a statue in memory of comfort women.

The Japanese government has already described the statue plan as "misguided".

The statue, commemorating World War II women who were forced into sexual slavery, is an emotional issue in Strathfield, which has large Korean and Chinese communities.

While no final decision on its location has been taken, Strathfield has been mentioned in reports - which has led to 500 pro-forma protest letters being received at council's Homebush Road offices from Japese protestors.

Tonight, a petition is expected to be presented for the plan to be abandoned. But council are also braced for strong calls for the statue to be placed in the town centre.

Sydney's Korean and Chinese communities have agreed to pay for it, and maintain it in honour of the 200,000 wlmen and girls forced into sexual servitude by Japanese soldiers during the war.

Strathfield deputy mayor Sang Ok has been at the forfront fo the campaign for a statue, maintaining according to reports that it would send a signal to Japan.

Council oficials, however, are concerned that any offensive or provocative langauge should not be allowed in public places. The Japanese Embassy in Sydney told The Sydney Morning Herald: ''Japan hopes that ethnic and racial minority groups in countries all over the world can coexist in peace, and believes that it is not appropriate for people of various ethnic or racial backgrounds to bring in their differences of opinion on this issue.

''The government of Japan understands that the issues of history should not be politicised or be turned into a diplomatic issue. However, on the other hand, while the details of the statue or inscription are not yet clear, Japan believes that the movement is due to a lack of understanding of our position and efforts towards comfort women, and is not compatible with Japan's position.''

The pro-forma letters appearing in Sydney at council and media outlets said: ''Recently, I have heard the news that Chinese and Korean communities in Australia have set up an Anti-Japanese War Crimes Alliance and that they are planning to erect a statue of 'comfort women' (prostitutes at the war) [sic] in Sydney and Strathfield.''

It went on to claim mother countries had done the same to women, and asked authorities to reject the statue plan.

The Friends of Comfort Women in Australia said they would suppose the erection of a statue to honour the comfort women.

The group believe the women have been forgotten and like the soldiers who died on the Sandakan Death March in World War II, a commemorative satue should be erected.

Our Strathfield 2014.4.1


Scores turn out to protest over comfort women statue plan as the international press look on

ARTICLE | TUE, 01/04/2014 - 15:29 | BY PETER LYNCH

It was one of the biggest protests seen in Strathfield in years. And it was all conducted under the watchful eye of the international press.

When councillors were asked to consider a petition against the idea of a statue commemorating Korean, Chinese and Australian "comfort women" used by the Japanese army during the second world war, some 140 Koreans, Chinese, Australian and Japanese protestors turned up to try and influence their decision.

Five Japanese news organisations were reportedly on hand to watch the deliberations, including Kideki Yoshiumura, bureau chief of the Sankei Shimbun, who had flown in from Singapore specially to cover the proceedings.

"It's a big story in Japan," he told the Scene outside the Town Hall, opened to provide more space to house the protestors.

Another Japanese man from Chatswood, who asked to remain anonymous, said he had handed council 8,900 names garnered from his Facebook page in just 24 hours, protesting the plans.

Council admitted they had received 500 protest letters in just a few days themselves.

Councillors voted to refer the matter to State and Federal Governments for the official position on such memorials, noting that its Community Strategic Plan upholds strong community consultation and inclusiveness over such matters.

The story started when a Korean and Chinese alliance group suggested a bronze $100,000 statue by Chinese artist Jian Hua Qian be placed on the town square.

The "Three Sisters" was to commemorate the 200,000 women used as sex slaves by the Japanese army during World War II. The Chinese and Korean communities have agreed to pay for it to be cast in bronze, and for its upkeep.

The "comfort women" issue is highly sensitive and controversial among the Japanese, Koreans and Chinese.

Strathfield's deputy mayor and prominent Korean Sang Ok apparently backed the plan, and was quoted in an article in the Sydney Morning Herald.

Last night, he told the Scene he would absent himself from any vote because he had an interest in the issue, maintaining it was up to the council to decide where any statue might be placed.

"Anywhere in Strathfield" was Cr Ok's preferred position.

Others were more forthright, using the open forum at the start of the council meeting to put forward both supporting and opposing views, greeted by load applause from their supporters. It was an emotional, yet dignified debate on matters dating back 70 years.

One particularly poignant speaker for the statue was the daughter of an Australian "comfort woman", Carol Ruff.

Her 91-year-old mother wrote the book 50 Years of Silence, and her story was instrumental in making rape a war crime.

The Japanese government has already described the statue plan as "misguided".

The Japanese Embassy in Sydney told The Sydney Morning Herald: ''Japan hopes that ethnic and racial minority groups in countries all over the world can coexist in peace, and believes that it is not appropriate for people of various ethnic or racial backgrounds to bring in their differences of opinion on this issue.

''The government of Japan understands that the issues of history should not be politicised or be turned into a diplomatic issue. However, on the other hand, while the details of the statue or inscription are not yet clear, Japan believes that the movement is due to a lack of understanding of our position and efforts towards comfort women, and is not compatible with Japan's position.''

The pro-forma letters appearing in Sydney at council and media outlets said: ''Recently, I have heard the news that Chinese and Korean communities in Australia have set up an Anti-Japanese War Crimes Alliance and that they are planning to erect a statue of 'comfort women' (prostitutes at the war) [sic] in Sydney and Strathfield.''

Our Strathfield 2014.4.1

デイリーテレグラフ。誤解も多いが、それでもなるべく公平に両論併記を心がけている印象。これなら、日本政府がもう少しハッキリとした公式見解を出せば状況は改善するかもしれない。そう思わせる。

Strathfield community divided over proposed tribute to comfort women

CONTROVERSY over a plan to build a statue honouring women forced into sex slavery during WWII boiled over at Strathfield Council last night.

More than 120 people poured into the meeting in response to a proposal to put up the statue in Strathfield honouring the 200,000 ‘comfort women’ — women and girls forced into sexual servitude during war by the Japanese.

The issue has divided Sydney’s Asian communities and yesterday, was criticised as misguided by the Japanese embassy in Australia.

A petition opposing the statue started by Japanese Women for Justice and Peace has already attracted over 10,000 signatures.

Now there are questions over whether the statue plan is simply causing further divisions.

More than 25 per cent of Strathfield’s population have Chinese or Korean ancestry and members of both communities have pushed hard for the statue in Strathfield.

Many comfort women were taken from Japanese occupied areas in Korea and China during WWII as well as other South-East Asian nations including Indonesia and Vietnam.

Last night, councillors allowed speakers from both sides to take the floor including Carol Ruff, the daughter of Jan Ruff O’Herne, a former comfort woman born in Java who in the early nineties spoke out about her experiences.

“We feel that, as you can see here tonight from the meeting, this issue hasn’t really gone away and I think it’s passed down through the families,” said Ms Ruff, who made acclaimed documentary 50 Years of Silence about the book her mother wrote about her life.
“We still feel very strongly. I think what she (Ms Ruff O’Herne) would like to see — apart from a statue in Strathfield — is some recognition from the Japanese government and an apology. That would mean so much, just like when Kevin Rudd said sorry.”

Others argued that raking up events from 70 years ago was not conducive to harmony while some questioned the validity of a statue which would have minimal connection to Australia.

Kohki Iwasaki, who identified himself as Japanese-Australian, said approving the statue would be “synonymous with apartheid” pointing at incidents of racism when a similar statue was erected in America to suggest it would be culturally divisive.

“On it (the statue) is carved a statement that turns all the existence of the Japanese race into a crime against humanity, without realising that it is this very statue that is encouraging yet another crime against humanity,” he told the meeting.

Mr Iwasaki went on to say that the statue contravened UN directives on human rights and would open old wounds.

Why single-out a 70-year-old story of hatred, when we can use that effort to prevent something happening now,” he asked.

“I believe the statue is only going to breed more hatred. If we sow seeds of hatred, what will grow?

After leaving the makeshift chamber to discuss the issue in closed session, the council decided to refer the issue to both the state and federal government and consult its community following the responses.

The plan for the statue arose from the outrage caused in Japan last month, when more conservative elements of the Japanese government said a 1993 apology to the women, mainly of Korean and Chinese heritage, should be watered down.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe caused further anger by suggesting many of the women were willing participants, although he later distanced himself from the issue.

Strathfield Council’s deputy mayor Sang Ok this week condemned the Japanese prime minister’s comments and has come out in support of the proposed statue, which would be a version of the one in the US by Chinese artist Pin Hsun Hsiang.

While no official proposal was on the council agenda last night, 120 people turned up in response to the increasing controversy building around the statue. The crowd was so big, it forced the council from its normal chambers and into a bigger hall.

Comfort Women
● Comfort women were women and girls taken from countries occupied by Japan during World War II, including Korea, China, Indonesia, Vietnam, Burma and the Philippines.

● Although the bulk of the women involved were from South-East Asia, some were from Australia and The Netherlands.

● Some claim as few as 20,000 women were involved while others say up to 410,000. Somewhere around 200,000 is the widely accepted figure.

● It is estimated that up to three quarters of comfort women died, with most others left infertile due to sexual trauma.

● It is claimed that the women were often abducted from their homes and promised work in factories or restaurants, before being sent to the ‘comfort stations’.

● Documents from the Japanese Imperial Army suggest that the stations, attached to the military, were set up to prevent the rape of local women by army personnel in order to dispel rising hostility among people in invaded area.

● Despite accepting that the women were coerced in 1993, the Japanese government reneged on their decision in 2007, claiming there was no evidence that the women were seized by force.

6 件のコメント:

  1. デイリーテレグラフの「韓国・中国」を同等に併記する報道姿勢に違和感を感じたのですが、どうやら今後の中韓連携方針を如実に示していると言えますね。

    中国が仕掛ける根拠不明の「慰安婦30万人」 6月英文出版
    2014.4.4 10:28
    http://sankei.jp.msn.com/world/news/140404/chn14040410310002-n1.htm

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    1. オーストラリアでの今回の一件は民間の動きでしょうが、中国は政府レベルでもこの問題に介入してくるかもしれません。

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  2. Overseas Korean と overseas Chinese の歴史は随分と異なると思うのですが、抗日では連携を強めている印象を受けます。華僑(華人)は現実的ですので理にかなわないことより、利にならないことに執着はしなさそうですが、孫文が世界中の華僑の援助を受けたときに華僑を、「華僑為革命之母」(革命の母)と呼んだように、政治的なロビー活動やそのためのネットワークは筋金入りだと思います。国民党や中共に膨大な支援をしていたのも彼らでしたし。カナダアルファがジャン・ラフ・オハーンに妙に肩入れするのもオランダインドネシアにおいて華人が現地インドネシア人より優遇され経済的に潤っていたからなのでしょうか。日本が華僑を移民として大量に受け入れたときに、彼らが日本政府に従うとは到底、思えないですし在日コリアン社会と連携したときにどうなるか・・・

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    1. 移民社会を迎えると、一層この問題も複雑になりそうですね。

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    2. 中国ではoverseas Korean のことを、朝僑と呼ぶらしいのですが、日本は既にと言うか、戦後統治を戦勝国がどのようにプランしたのか浮き彫りになるきっかけを、この慰安婦問題は作ってくれた気がします。その点では謝謝と言うべきかもしれません。そしてさらに遡ること明治維新前夜にも海外の力を借りながら日本国内の覇権を握った層が居ましたが、慰安婦問題は完全に政治利用されていますので対応を間違えますと、これからの日本の領土問題にも深く影響すると思います。

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    3. はい。慰安婦騒動はある意味象徴的な出来事です。我々は良く考えて行動していかねばなりません。

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