Japan mayor faces censure over sex slave comments

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 30 May, 2013, 5:17pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 30 May, 2013, 7:43pm

The mayor of the Japanese city of Osaka is facing a censure motion over inflammatory comments he made about Japan’s wartime sex slaves, remarks that sparked an international uproar.

The city assembly will vote Thursday afternoon on the motion, which says Mayor Toru Hashimoto’s comments created confusion and tarnished the image of the city.

The motion has no legal implication for Hashimoto, who is also co-chair of an emerging nationalistic party.

The outspoken mayor sparked a firestorm of controversy after he said on May 13 that Japan’s use of so-called “comfort women” before and during World War II was necessary for military discipline and providing rest for troops.

He sought later to clarify his comments, saying he meant that military authorities of the day must have deemed the practice necessary.