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The Supreme Court has turned down an appeal filed by a group of Chinese who were demanding ¥150 million in damages for being forcibly brought to Japan to work as laborers during World War II, court officials said Monday.

The top court’s decision, issued Friday, puts an end to the lawsuit, which was filed by 13 plaintiffs including former laborers and the kin of those deceased.

The ruling follows those by the district and high courts, which rejected the claim on grounds that the individual rights of Chinese nationals for war reparations were discarded under the 1972 Japan-China joint communique.

But the Yamagata District Court recognized in February 2008 that the Chinese were forced to work in harsh conditions and that the state and the freight company they were forced to work at damaged their health by failing to improve working conditions.

In November 2009, the Sendai High Court also admitted that the plaintiffs were forcibly brought to Japan and were forced to engage in hard labor under poor working conditions.

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