SEOUL, March 1 (Xinhua) -- South Korean President Moon Jae-in said Thursday that the Japanese government has no right to end the wartime sex slavery issue as it was the perpetrator of the crime against humanity.
Moon made the remarks at a ceremony to mark the 99th anniversary of the March 1 Movement, which was a massive street demonstration on March 1, 1919 by Koreans to fight against the Japanese colonization of the Korean Peninsula.
"Japanese government, the perpetrator, must not say it is over," Moon said in a speech at the ceremony held at the Seodaemun Prison in Seoul, which the Imperial Japan used to persecute a number of Korean independent fighters under its 1910-1945 colonial rule.
"The wartime crime against humanity cannot be covered up by saying it is over," Moon said, referring to the sexual enslavement by the Japanese army of the Korean women before and during World War II.
Historians say up to 200,000 girls and young women from the Korean Peninsula and other parts of Asia were coerced, kidnapped, or duped into sex servitude for Japan's military brothels before and during the Pacific War.
Moon said remembering and learning from the history is a real resolution of what is especially a miserable history, urging Japan to face the truth of history and its justice with a universal conscience of human beings.
The South Korean leader wished that Japan can come to a real settlement with the countries it oppressed and walk a path to peaceful coexistence and prosperity together with the neighbors.
Moon said his only wish for Japan was to move together into a future based on sincere reflection and reconciliation, noting that he did not want any special treatment from Japan.