Voices of Timorese survivors from the Japanese military’s sexual slavery system: Calling for Truth and Justice
Kiyoko Furusawa Department of Economics - Tokyo Woman’s Christian University (Department of Economics-TWCU), JAPAN
In December 2000 two Timorese survivors from the Japanese military’s sexual slavery system, Sra. Marta Abu Bere and Sra. Esmeralda Boe, participated in the Women’s International War Tribunal on the Japanese Military’s Sexual Slavery System that took place in Tokyo. Since that time 21 survivors have come out to tell their experiences and their words have been shared through public events and publications in Timor-Leste and Japan with the efforts of civil society organizations of both countries. Thanks to their testimonies, the circumstances of the crimes and their aftermath as well as their pains, trauma and angers have already become clear substantially. However, the governments of Japan as well as Timor-Leste have never recognized their sufferings officially. As a result, redress in any form has not yet been done for them by the Japanese government.
The women’s experiences in the Japanese occupation period were found to be similar in many points with what the Timorese women experienced under Indonesian occupation. The presentation analyzes the crimes of the Japanese military, the background of impunity and the lack of redress.