TOKYO, March 10 -- Japan will not revise its official apology over wartime sex slavery, or "comfort women," made by then Chief Cabinet Secretary Yohei Kono in 1993, said the government's top spokesman on Monday.
Yoshihide Suga, chief cabinet secretary, told a press conference that although the country will not revise the world- recognized "Kono Statement," it will examine how the statement was compiled, according to Japan's Kyodo News.
Suga's remark referred to the testimonies made by South Korean women who were forced to provide sex to Japanese Imperial Army during World War II.
The testimonies founded the basis of the 1993 statement that acknowledged the Japanese government and its Imperial Army was involved in the recruitment of between 200,000 and 400,000 girls and women and forced them to serve in brothels.
Suga said on Feb. 28 that Japan will set up a team to re- examine a 1993 statement to "understand the background" of the statement.
Japan's relations with its neighbors such as South Korea and China are frayed as Japan is trying to whitewash its wartime history, including the "comfort women" issue.
The attempt has been slammed by South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se who told the U.N. Human Rights Council last week that the move "is an added insult to the honor and dignity of the victims."