A 'comfort woman' who still seeks an apology, even in court

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NANJING, China -- Lei Guiying is slight and stooped with age. She is poor and illiterate. But the 79-year-old Chinese peasant says she knows that Shinzo Abe, the Japanese Prime Minister, was wrong this month to deny that the Imperial Army coerced women into army-run brothels during the Second World War.

She was barely 13 when she was raped by a Japanese soldier and, for the next two years, forced to work in a Japanese-run brothel on the edge of the southern city of Nanjing.

In her first interview with a foreign newspaper, Ms Lei says that she is ready, if the Chinese authorities will support her, to file a case against the Japanese Government for its wartime abuses. She knows nothing of a private fund created in 1995 by the Japanese Government that provided a way to support former sex slaves without offering official compensation and which expires today. But she echoes the views of other “comfort women” who have rejected the payments, demanding formal government compensation and an apology approved by the Japanese parliament.

For more than 60 years Ms Lei concealed her history...

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