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Findings from First Report on 'Comfort Women'
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A group of Chinese researchers, seeking to shed light on the "comfort women" issue, gave their first report on Tuesday, the Beijing Times reported.

Two shocking facts quickly emerged. Not content with setting up military brothels in residential houses and meeting chambers, the Japanese military even defiled Chinese religious temples to act as "comfort houses", the report said.

Furthermore, it came to light that one "comfort house" was used by the Japanese military until 1947, fully two years after the end of World War II.

After World War II, certain Japanese forces were captured and integrated into the local Kuomintang Army. One of the groups, referred to as "the sixth security guards unit", contained paperwork that revealed the existence of a "comfort house" in Taiyuan, the capital of Shanxi Province, which lasted until 1947, researchers found.

The investigation was conducted by China's former "comfort women" investigation commission, which is co-sponsored by All China Lawyers Association and China Legal Aid Foundation.

The investigation focused on five counties in Shanxi Province, two counties in Hainan Province and six counties in Yunnan Province from September 2006 to March 2007.

During the investigation, 17 former "comfort women" survivors were found, with 16 of these living in Shanxi Province and one in Hainan. Their revelations helped reveal the true scope of the horrors they were forced to endure, with fourteen of them being under 18 years old when press-ganged into slavery. Chillingly, the youngest one was only twelve when seized by the Japanese.

Kang Jian, a lawyer engaged in this investigation, said "this is the first systematic investigation on Chinese "comfort women" and two more reports from this investigation will be released." He further promised a "larger-scale investigation" would take place in the future.

(Xinhua News Agency July 3, 2007)

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