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Comfort Woman Statue in the Philippines


Author(s): Scott Douglas Jacobsen

Publication (Outlet/Website): Medium (Humanist Voices)

Publication Date (yyyy/mm/dd): 2018/04/29

A comfort woman statue was erected in the Philippines. The statue was built in honor of comfort women who lived through WWII.

Comfort women worked in brothels to ‘comfort’ the military men. The statue was moved from a seaside promenade in Manila. Women’s groups in the Philippines are not happy with this development.

The Manila City Hall, in a statement, declared that the bronze statue will come back once drainage work is complete. The bronze statue represents a blindfolded Filipina, which points to comfort women in WWII.

No time frame was claimed for the project. This armed activists. However, the Japanese government put pressure on the Philippines government to remove the monument.

The co-founded president of a Chinese Filipino group, Teresita Ang See, said, “What happened is that we kneeled down to the Japanese. … That’s why it’s shameful, so shameful.”

Professor Michael Charleston “Xiao” Chua called for the public to fight for the return the symbol. The statues represents an important point of the Philippine national narrative based on this call for activism.

Seiko Noda, the Japanese minister for internal affairs and communications, regretted the construction of the monument in January of 2018. Kyodo News reported on the Japanese Embassy in Manila.

The Philippine government informed the embassy of the intent to move the statue. The topic of comfort women remains a dilemma for both governments, Japan and the Philippines.

Filipinas suffered from 1942 to 1945 as comfort women due to Japanese occupation. Chinese-Filipinos donated for the construction of the bronze statue of the blindfolded Filipina.

20,000 to 200,000 women in Asia — many Koreans — got forced into sex with the front-line soldiers from Japan. Many Japanese nationalists argue the comfort women were voluntary prostitutes and not forced into sex.

Japanese gave $18,000 (2,000,000 yen) to 280 women in the Philippines, South Korea, and Taiwan. South Korean and Filipina women demand full apology by the government of Japan along with compensation.


ABS-CBN News. (2018, April 29). Let’s not insult Japan: Duterte backs removal of ‘comfort woman’ statue. Retrieved from

Coconuts Manila. (2018, April 29). Like a thief in the night, PH gov’t removes Manila’s ‘comfort woman statue’ to make way for drainage system. Retrieved from

Nikkei: Asian Review. (2018, April 28). ‘Comfort women’ memorial removed from Manila baywalk. Retrieved from

The Japan Times. (2018, April 28). New ‘comfort women’ memorial removed from thoroughfare in Manila under pressure from Japanese Embassy. Retrieved from

telesur. (2018, April 29). Philippines: Women’s Rights Groups Protest Removal of ‘Comfort Woman’ Memorial. Retrieved from

Xinhua. (2018, April 29). Removal of Manila “comfort woman” statue condemned in Philippines. Retrieved from


In-Sight Publishing by Scott Douglas Jacobsen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. Based on a work at


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