A Japanese vice foreign minister told a U.N. meeting on the status of women on Tuesday that Japan is taking a sincere approach to the issue of "comfort women," referring to violence against females involving the Japanese military during World War II.

Takashi Uto, parliamentary vice minister, said, "Japan is sincerely addressing the issue of women's rights with regard to the comfort women issue."

Speaking at a meeting of the Commission on the Status of Women at the U.N. headquarters, Uto added, "Japan has made the greatest possible effort up to the present time from the perspective of facilitating feasible remedies (for) the former comfort women."

Uto's remarks came on the heels of a statement made Monday by Kim Hee-jung, the South Korean minister for gender equality and family, about females forced into Japanese military brothels.

At the commission, the South Korean minister said, "The issue of sexual slavery during the Second World War known as comfort women has yet to be resolved." She did not name Japan in her remarks.

Uto said, "The government of Japan is committed to doing its utmost to ensure that the 21st century is free from further violations of women's dignity and basic human rights."