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FOREIGN AFFAIRS—JAPAN—COMFORT WOMEN

Senator Hanson-Young, pursuant to notice of motion not objected to as a formal motion, moved general business notice of motion no. 506—That the Senate—

 (a) notes that:

  (i) 15 August 2009 was the 64th anniversary of the conclusion of World War II, and

  (ii) during the war up to 200 000 women and girls were forced into sexual slavery by the Japanese military and kept in `comfort stations';

 (b) recognises that:

  (i) the Japanese `comfort women' have yet to receive an apology or any official acknowledgement of the grave human rights abuses that were suffered at the hands of the Japanese military, and

  (ii) since 2007, the United States of America, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Canada, the European Union (with 27 member countries), South Korea, Taiwan and three city councils in Japan have all passed similar motions calling on the Japanese Government to accept full responsibility and apologise for the abuses of comfort women; and

 (c) calls on the Australian Government to urge the Japanese Government to:

  (i) accept full responsibility for the abuses of comfort women,

  (ii) officially apologise for the crimes committed against the women,

  (iii) provide adequate compensation to comfort women or their immediate families, and

  (iv) accurately teach the history of comfort women in schools.

Statements by leave: The Special Minister of State (Senator Ludwig), the Leader of the Australian Greens (Senator Bob Brown) and Senators Parry and Hanson-Young, by leave, made statements relating to the motion.

Question put.


The Senate divided—

AYES, 7

Senators—

Brown, Bob

Fielding

Hanson-Young

Ludlam

Milne

Siewert (Teller)

Xenophon

NOES, 37

Senators—

Adams

Back

Bernardi

Bilyk

Birmingham

Boswell

Brown, Carol

Bushby

Cameron

Cash

Colbeck

Collins

Cormann

Eggleston

Evans

Feeney

Ferguson

Fierravanti-Wells

Fisher

Furner

Humphries

Hurley

Ludwig

Lundy

Marshall

McEwen

McLucas

Moore

O'Brien

Parry (Teller)

Polley

Pratt

Stephens

Sterle

Troeth

Williams

Wortley

Question negatived.