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Politics

South Korea's Park defends unpopular deal with Japan

Park Geun-hye   © Yonhap/Kyodo

SEOUL -- South Korean President Park Geun-hye on Thursday urged the nation to accept an agreement with Japan on resolving the issue of wartime "comfort women," calling it sufficient under the circumstances.

     Her government went into the negotiations that led up to Monday's accord, feeling like being pushed to the brink to defend the national interest, Park said in a statement read by spokesman Kim Sung-woo. Park urged critics wanting to start the process again to understand that Seoul has no leverage for doing more.

     Just over half of South Koreans dislike the agreement, compared with 43% who approve of it, according to South Korean pollster Realmeter.

     Around noontime, police took away 30 university students protesting outside the building housing the Japanese embassy here. The demonstrators were shouting that the agreement was invalid.

     Moon Jae-in, the leader of the main opposition Minjoo Party, assured former comfort women living at a group home near here that his party will fight for and win legal compensation and a public apology from Japan.

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