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Comfort women stories will be told in Fullerton

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Fullerton's city council will vote August 19 to possibly show their support to 'comfort women' of World War II.

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The council will vote on whether they support HR 121, which deals with 'comfort women' who were sex slaves to Japanese soldiers during World War II. Fullerton Museum Center is considering placing a peace memorial at the museum not only to honor comfort women but to also serve as a reminder about human trafficking.

The Korean American Forum of California requested that the city council draft a resolution in support of HR 121, which was passed in the House of Representatives in 2007. They also request that the council support the Fullerton Museum Center Association as they consider options for a peace monument that will not only honor these women but also serve as a reminder about human trafficking. The museum will have an exhibit in 2015 called "Halmoni: Artifacts from the Museum of Japanese Military Sexual Slavery," which will share the stories of these women.

Comfort women were coerced from Korea, The Philipines and other nations by Japan. They were used as sex slaves for the Japanese soldiers during World War II. It is historically known as one of the largest cases of human trafficking in the 20th century. Survivors have been telling their stories, as they did last month at the museum.

Many Fullerton based associations are supportive of the memorial, including the North Orange County YWCA, The Woman's Club of Fullerton and Crittenton.

The House of Representatives passed HR 121 in 2007 to "[Express] the sense of the House of Representatives that the government of Japan should formally acknowledge, apologize, and accept historical responsibility in a clear and unequivocal manner for its Imperial Armed Force's coercion of young women into sexual slavery, known to the world as "comfort women", during its colonial and wartime occupation of Asia and the Pacific Islands from the 1930s through the duration of World War II."

The city council meeting will begin at 6:30 p.m. in the council chambers at City Hall.

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