English donga | Japanese donga | Chinese donga [ GB | Big5 ] | Korean donga
   
Archives
Business
IT
National
Politics
International
Sports
Editorial
Op-ed
Life
Entertainment
Link
Cartoon
Hate Practice
Individual Claims Not Covered by 1965 Treaty: Documents
MARCH 15, 2010 09:29  
Japan said the 1965 bilateral treaty normalizing ties with Korea did not cover individual compensation claims from victims of forced labor under Japanese colonial rule, documents released yesterday said.

The Japanese Foreign Ministry prepared an internal document in 1965 saying, 밫hough a treaty was signed, an individual뭩 right to seek damages is a separate issue.

The treaty contained a clause that the rights of the two countries and individuals to seek damages were settled under the condition that both sides agree on Japanese economic aid to Korea. The clause served as the grounds for cancellation of a former forced laborer to seek damages from the Japanese government.

The disclosure of the new clause in the document, however, will likely rekindle debate over an individual뭩 right to seek damages.

The document was titled 밫he legal meaning of the people뭩 rights and the waiver of the rights to seek damages under the peace treaty.

밯hen an individual뭩 property rights (private rights) in a country is infringed upon by another country, the former country holds the right to seek damages from the latter country, but this right is legally separate from the individual뭩 own right to seek damages, the document said.

Another document titled 밃rticle 2 of the Japan-Korea Treaty, and the detention of fishing boats said, 밫he meaning of Article 2 in the treaty constitutes a promise that a country does not exercise the right to diplomatic protection, a sovereign national right recognized under international law, but this does not mean that individuals have no right to seek damages from the other country.

This implies that a country can exercise the right to seek compensation for damage inflicted on its citizens at the national level, but does not mean an individual cannot seek damages.

The document from the Japanese Foreign Ministry was made public in 2008 after a Japanese civic group on the complete disclosure of documents on the 1965 treaty demanded Tokyo release the information.

The 60,000 pages of documents drew attention because of clauses on Korea뭩 easternmost islets of Dokdo, which Japan had claimed.

The documents, however, were found to possess another significant implication by lawyers in the course of a lawsuit against the Japanese government and the military contractor Fujikoshi, which was filed by former forced laborers during the Second World War.

As a result, the lawyers, who lost a trial in a lower court in 2003, asserted the validity of an individual뭩 right to seek damages based on clauses in the document at a trial before the Nagoya high court Monday last week.

The court, however, upheld the lower court ruling that all the rights of Korean individuals to seek damages had expired due to the Korea-Japan treaty.

Editorial
Regression act of National Assembly
An opinion poll found on Tuesday that 66.8 percent of...
Op-ed
KBS president-nominee under attack by unionists, opposition party
Lee In-ho, emeritus professor of Seoul National...
Copyright 2008 donga.com. All rights reserved.
Contact newsroom@donga.com for more information.