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Japan’s Foreign Ministry said Wednesday it will make efforts to realize the removal of a statue symbolizing so-called wartime “comfort women,” displayed in the central Berlin district of Mitte, in a year.

The ministry indicated its stance over the issue at a meeting of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party’s Foreign Affairs Division, Masahisa Sato, director of the division, told reporters after the meeting.

The statue in Mitte was built by a pro-South Korean civic group in Germany in September. It is allowed to be on display for one year.

Comfort women, many of whom were Korean, suffered under Japan’s military brothel system before and during World War II.

An official was quoted as saying that the ministry “will make efforts while using all means possible to remove the statue in a year.”

In response to the official’s remarks, a participant at the meeting said, “We don’t need to hear excuses,” while another stressed the importance of cooperation with private citizens.

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