Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said Friday the Abe administration will launch a study team to re-examine the 1993 Kono statement.
The statement was the first official acknowledgment that the Imperial Japanese Army and government forced women to provide sex to troops in military brothels.
The statement, issued by then-Chief Cabinet Secretary Yohei Kono, was based on testimony by 16 South Korean former “comfort women” selected by Seoul who said they were forced into prostitution.
The validity of their testimony has never been scrutinized.
“We will re-examine it while maintaining the confidential nature of the testimony. Then the administration will consider how to handle this issue again,” Suga said during a session of the Lower House Budget Committee, adding that the administration will share the research results with the Diet.