South Korea to unveil decision over 'comfort women' deal with Japan

Seoul to announce measures on 'defective' sex slavery deal

The deal, however, prompted strong criticism from victims and civic groups who claim that Japan's apology was not honest enough and that the government did not consult with them in advance.

Japan responded by saying any attempt by South Korea to revise the 2015 deal, struck by a conservative South Korean government, would make relations "unmanageable".

President Moon Jae-in criticized the deal last month as seriously flawed because the negotiations failed to reflect the opinions of the victims and the citizens.

"Japan should accept the truth, apologize with a honest heart and take (the comfort women issue) as a lesson and work with the global community in such a way that (such things) could not occur again", he said during a televised press conference. Japan's foreign minister, Taro Kono, said that the deal was a promise between two nations, irrespective of changes in government, and that he will issue a strong complaint to Seoul. It also said it would not use Japan's funds for the victims, and instead would set aside its own budget to heal the victims' wounds and restore their dignity.

"It is an undeniable fact that that the 2015 deal was an official agreement reached between the two countries, and we will not demand a renegotiation from the Japanese government", Kang told reporters at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Seoul.

"We are not thinking of moving even a millimeter" on the deal, Suga said.

More news: Hong Kong Business PMI Rises To 51.5 In December - Nikkei

Japan said on Tuesday it can "by no means" accept South Korea's call for more steps to help "comfort women", a euphemism for girls and women forced to work in Japan's wartime brothels, a divisive issue that Japan says was resolved with a 2015 deal.

Sentiments about the issue are still running deep in both South Korea and Japan, the two crucial allies of the U.S. given the tension situation due to North Korea threats. But the Japanese government is considering not accepting the invitation. "Japan has kept up its side of the deal". "With this in mind, our government will not ask to renegotiate the agreement with Japan".

How the 1 billion yen raised by the Korean government to match the Japanese fund will be used is yet to be decided and will include consultations with the survivors and the Japanese government, according to a Korean Foreign Ministry official.

Moon had lambasted the agreement on the campaign trail and was elected president in May after Park was impeached and jailed over a massive corruption scandal.

But Moon also said South Korea will try to separate historical issues from efforts to develop future-oriented cooperation with Tokyo.

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