August 15, 2022
KCNA Ministry of Foreign Affairs (EN)

Liquidation of the Past Is the Only Way out

Date: 03/08/2022 | Source: Ministry of Foreign Affairs (EN) | Read original version at source

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Against a backdrop of vigorous struggle for building a new world free from aggression and war, domination and subordination, African countries are now making progress in their efforts to eradicate the aftereffects of colonialism.

The Democratic Republic of Congo strove to retrieve the remains of Lumumba, the first Prime Minister, who was killed by the Belgian colonialists while waging a struggle for freedom and liberation of Africa. As a result, the DR Congo recently got the remains back from Belgium, and received an apology again for killing the prime minister.

Cameroon also conducted a campaign to retrieve the cultural assets which were plundered by Germany in the past colonial period 120 years ago. In the end, it is about to take back the sculpture “Ngonnso”, a historic relic.

Nigeria, Benin, Namibia, Tanzania and other countries in the region are making great successes in their efforts to receive apologies and compensation from the European colonialists for their past crimes.

These successes are the precious fruition of the struggle of African countries to eradicate the aftereffects of the past colonial domination and enslavement and to build a new independent and equal world.

The international society is now strongly demanding that former colonial suzerain states clearly liquidate their past and establish new state relations with other countries, where the principles of mutual respect and non-interference in each other’s internal affairs are applied.

However, there is one state which defiantly refuses to apologize and compensate for its colonial rule and crimes against humanity, going against such a trend. It is none other than Japan.

Even a mere child knows about the immeasurable damage which the Japanese imperialists inflicted upon the people of Asian countries, clamoring for “Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere” in the last century.

In particular, Japan abducted 200,000 Korean women and turned them into sexual slaves of the Japanese army. It also schemed to efface the Korean nation itself from the history by eliminating Korean language, family names and given names, and obliterating Korean culture. These are the most heinous crimes against humanity committed by Japan.

Nearly 80 years have passed since the defeat of Japanese imperialism but the world’s criticism against Japan’s past crime is still growing stronger. The reason, in a word, lies in the immorality of the Japanese authority which is playing all kinds of tricks to deny its past history stained with aggression and plunder, far from apologizing and compensating for it.

Distortion of history, visit to Yasukuni Shrine and moves to become a military power perpetuated by the Japanese authorities even in the present century are indicative of Japan’s brazenness to restore the militarist specters and carry on the policy of overseas invasion and obliteration of other nations.

Japan does not feel any guilt nor qualm about its last century’s crimes of massacring tens of millions of innocent civilians and plundering a large amount of assets in several Asian countries. But it is now trying to stage a highly hypocritical development conference in Africa, acting slyly as if it is interested in development of health service and civil sector of the developing countries.

However, crimes against humanity can never be forgiven in any part of the world and the unliquidated guilt-ridden history can never be hidden, though it is clad in silk.

Japan should sincerely reflect on and completely liquidate its past crime if it wants to coexist with other countries with an easy mind. This is the only way out.

Han Chol Gyu

Member of Korea-Africa Association

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