South Korea on Wednesday formally requested the Worldwide Olympic Committee to ban Japan’s “Rising Solar” flag from subsequent 12 months’s Tokyo Olympics, evaluating it to a Nazi swastika and deeming it an offensive reminder of colonial atrocities.
Japan’s official flag is a purple circle on a white background. The flag that the South Koreans have objected to reveals a purple solar with 16 rays extending outwards. The “Rising Solar” flag has been utilized by Japan for hundreds of years and remains to be utilized by the Asian nation’s army Self-Protection Forces. The flag was additionally the image utilized by Japan’s Imperial Military and Navy throughout World Struggle II and is a painful reminder for a lot of South Koreans of Japan’s rule within the Korean Peninsula from 1910 to 1945.
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South Korea’s Ministry of Tradition, Sports activities and Tourism despatched the letter to the IOC to precise its “disappointment” over Tokyo’s organizing committee’s choice to permit the flag, which has been adopted by the far-right in Japan and drawn comparisons to using the Accomplice flag.
Tokyo 2020 organizers mentioned in a press release earlier that “the flag itself is just not thought of to be a political assertion, so it isn’t considered as a prohibited merchandise.”
An Min-suk, South Korea’s lead committee member for sports activities, criticized the choice to permit the flag throughout a Tuesday information convention, the Worldwide Enterprise Occasions reported.
“A flag symbolizing struggle is just not appropriate for peaceable Olympic Video games,” he mentioned. “The Rising Solar flag is akin to an emblem of the satan to Asians and Koreas, identical to how the swastika is an emblem of Nazis.”
In Wednesday’s letter, South Korea’s sports activities ministry mentioned it was upset over Tokyo’s choice to permit the flag to be displayed at Olympic venues and as soon as extra referred to as on the committee to ban it.
The Olympic controversy is simply the most recent dispute between the U.S. allies.
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Relations between South Korea and Japan have fallen to their lowest stage in many years. The dispute over compensation for compelled labor throughout colonial rule has changed into a sequence of squabbles that has affected commerce and safety. Some South Koreans are even boycotting Japanese items and tourism between the 2 international locations has slumped, The Washington Publish reported.
South Korea’s anger over using the flag ramped up in 2011 and has been used to ignite anti-Japan nationalism. Simply final week, Japan pulled out of a world fleet evaluate hosted by South Korea as a result of it refused to take down the “Rising Solar” flag from its ships.