Former wartime 'sex slave' says Japan mayor's remark 'absurd'

OSAKA, Japan (AP) - A former sex slave has said a Japanese mayor's remarks about Japan's wartime sex slavery are "absurd".

Ms Kim Bok Dong, who is from South Korea, was referring on Saturday to comments by Osaka Mayor Toru Hashimoto. He has angered many by saying Japan's wartime practice of forcing many Asian women into prostitution for its military was considered necessary.

Ms Kim said anyone who makes such an "absurd comment" should quit politics. The 87-year-old and another victim, Ms Kil Won Ok, were speaking to their supporters to share with them their painful past as so-called comfort women.

The two cancelled their planned meeting Friday with Mr Hashimoto, citing his lack of remorse.

Mr Hashimoto's comments reignited longtime resentment in neighbouring countries that suffered from Japan's wartime aggression and have complained about the lack of atonement for atrocities.