Lee Hong-hyon, one of three South Koreans who filed a lawsuit in June 2011 to get the Japanese government to cover medical costs for atomic bomb victims who now live overseas, was the only one still alive to hear the Osaka District Court rule in their favor on Oct. 24.

The ruling paves the way for hibakusha living outside Japan to receive the same medical coverage as A-bomb survivors in Japan, although the court rejected the plaintiffs' demand for damages.

Lee, 67, was exposed to radiation while still in his mother's womb in Hiroshima. He could not make it to Japan for the Osaka court ruling due to poor health. His co-plaintiffs were relatives of two Hiroshima hibakusha.