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Last Updated: Wednesday, 2 May 2007, 08:38 GMT 09:38 UK
S Korea to seize 'traitors' land
South Korean former comfort women, or sex slaves forced to serve for Japanese imperial army during World War II shout slogans during a weekly anti-Japan rally, 19/01/2005
S Koreans are still angry at Japan's colonial era brutality
South Korea has said it plans to seize assets secured by alleged collaborators during Japanese colonial rule.

About 3.6bn won (US$3.9m) of land will be confiscated from the descendants of nine alleged collaborators, a presidential committee has said.

The committee's head, Kim Chang-kuk, said the move would restore South Korean people's dignity.

Proceeds from the sale of the seized assets will be used to help former independence fighters.

Some will also be earmarked for projects to commemorate the independence movement during the colonial period.


The decision to seize former collaborators' assets, the first of its kind, was made by a nine-member body established last year to identify the property of alleged collaborators.

The land belonged to the descendants of nine government ministers who played a key role in Japan's forced annexation of Korea in 1910, the panel said.

"This decision is historically meaningful as the first visible outcome of state efforts to punish pro-Japanese collaborators," a spokesman told Yonhap news agency.

The move will enable South Korea "to recover our people's dignity, that was violated by Japanese imperialism and those involved in pro-Japanese and anti-nationalistic acts," Kim Chang-kuk said in a statement.

South Koreans still harbour deep-rooted resentment against Japan for its brutality during the colonial period.

A particular cause of bitterness is the treatment of so-called "comfort women", who were forced to become sex slaves for the Imperial Japanese Army during World War II.

Japan's divisive 'comfort women' fund
10 Apr 07 |  Asia-Pacific
Korean WWII sex slaves fight on
09 Aug 05 |  Asia-Pacific

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