Japan has offered another apology to South Korea for the suffering inflicted during its colonisation of the Korean peninsula up to the end of World War II.
In what is seen as a bid to forge better ties with Seoul, Prime Minister Naoto Kan expressed deep remorse for the tremendous harm caused.
The gesture has angered some conservative politicians in Japan, fearful it will spark renewed calls for compensation, but South Korea welcomed the move.
South Korea’s Foreign Ministry Spokesman Kim Young-Sun said: ‘‘We accept Prime Minister Kan’s apology and he and his government’s will to overcome the unfortunate past and develop better relations between the two countries in the future.’‘
The brutal annexation of the Korean peninsula, which marks it centenary later this month, continues to affect Tokyo’s periodically fraught ties with Seoul.