• Kyodo


A former Asahi Shimbun reporter filed a libel suit Tuesday against a journalist and three publishers, arguing that their articles erroneously claimed he fabricated a report on a former Korean “comfort woman.”

In the suit filed with the Sapporo District Court, Takashi Uemura is demanding that journalist Yoshiko Sakurai and the publishers, including Shinchosha Publishing Co., pay ¥16.5 million in damages and publish an apology.

The suit states that Sakurai wrote articles branding Uemura’s 1991 report as a fabrication and intentionally false. It goes on to say that three magazines, including the weekly Shukan Shincho in its April 17, 2014, edition, carried Sakurai’s erroneous articles.

Uemura’s report in the Asahi Shimbun included remarks by the South Korean woman, who had worked at a brothel for Japanese soldiers during Japan’s colonial rule of the Korean Peninsula.

“I am not a fabricator. I don’t yield to unjust criticism,” Uemura told a news conference in Sapporo, where he now works as a part-time lecturer at Hokusei Gakuen University. “Judiciary power is required to rectify the situation.”

Uemura filed a similar suit in January with the Tokyo District Court against publisher Bungeishunju Ltd. and a university professor.

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