Since 1991, numerous lawsuits have been filed by former "comfort women" demanding that the Japanese government issue an official apology and pay compensation to the victims. All lawsuits state that the Japanese government violated the international treaties that protect civilians in military-occupied areas and prohibit human trafficking. The lawsuits state that the women were abducted or coerced into serving in the military brothels.
The Japanese government defense is that 1) Japan is subject to sovereign immunity; 2) Japan settled its wartime compensation issues in the 1951 San Francisco Peace Treaty and additional treaties with other countries; 3) individual claims cannot be made under international law; and 4) that the statute of limitations has passed.
We present the documents from both sides wherever possible. All documents from lawsuits filed in Japan are in Japanese. No translations are available at this time but links to summaries in English are available. You can find summaries of the cases by following the links below.
Lawsuits brought by former Korean "comfort women" against Japan
- Korean Victims of the Asia Pacific War (December 1991)
- Pusan Comfort Women and Women's Labor Corps Members (December 1992)
- Song Shin-do (April 1993)
- Hwang Geum Joo v. Japan (2002)
Lawsuits brought by former "comfort women" of other nations against Japan
- Chinese Comfort Women v. Japan (2 Groups)
- Women from Shan-xi Province, China
- Taiwanese Comfort Women
- Hainan Island Comfort Women
- Dutch Comfort Woman