Jiji Press BEIJING (Jiji Press)—Chinese who were forced to work in Japan under harsh conditions during World War II filed a lawsuit on Wednesday against their former Japanese employers, seeking compensation and apologies.
The complaint, filed with the First Intermediate People’s Court of Beijing by 37 plaintiffs, included bereaved families of such workers and demanded that Nippon Coke & Engineering Co., formerly Mitsui Mining Co., and Mitsubishi Materials Corp., pay damages of 1 million yuan, equivalent to about ¥17 million, per person.
The plaintiffs claimed the forced labor was a serious infringement of human rights meditated and committed jointly by the Japanese government and Japanese companies, including the two defendants.
They demanded the two companies issue apologies in newspaper ads in Japan and China.
At a news conference in Tokyo on Wednesday, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said there has been no dispute over China’s right to claim war-related compensation, including individuals’ rights, since the 1972 joint statement. The positions of the Japanese and Chinese governments on the matter have not changed, Suga said.