Glendale – Since the 2013 installation of the ‘Comfort Women’ Monument in Glendale’s Central Park, the Korean American Forum of California (KAFC) holds memorial rituals every time another victim passes away. On Sunday, August 20th, 2017 ANCA Glendale Chairman Artin Manoukian and Crescenta Valley Town Council President Harry Leon, attended the memorial of Huang Youliang, 90, from China.
In a letter sent to Mr. Manoukian, Executive Director of the KAFC, Phyllis Kim explained that Huang Youliang “was 15 years old (many victims were in their teens, a lot of them as young as 11) in 1941 when she was raped by Japanese troops invading her hometown. She was captured in the military “comfort station” as a sex slave for Japanese soldiers for two years. She was one of the plaintiffs who sued the Japanese government, demanding a formal apology and legal compensation. While the Japanese court acknowledged the women were kidnapped and forced to work as sex slaves, it ruled that individuals had no right to sue the state and that their right to pursue compensation had expired…She was one of the brave women who decided to break the silence, overcome the shame and trauma and speak out. Because of women like her, we know the horrors they went through and we can make sure the heinous crime never recurs.”
Mr. Manoukian was humbled to have attended Huang Youliang’s memorial, stating that, “it is heartbreaking what was inflicted upon these women by the Japanese army; however, I am happy to be living in a city where their pain isn’t forgotten, where their memory is honored.”
The Armenian National Committee of America – Glendale advocates for the social, economic, cultural, and political rights of the city’s Armenian American community and promotes increased civic participation at the grassroots and public policy levels.