In addition to cases filed in Japanese and US courts, the Women’s International War Crimes Tribunal on Japan’s Military Sexual Slavery took place on December 7-12, 2000 in Tokyo, Japan. The tribunal was a peoples’ court established by activists who sought redress from the Japanese government for acts of sexual violence perpetrated against ‘comfort women.’ The prosecutors indicted Emperor Hirohito and other high-ranking WWII Japanese officials for crimes against humanity, and sued the Japanese government for state responsibility in the commission of these atrocities. See document here.
The judges, led by Gabrielle McDonald, former president of the Yugoslavia War Crimes Tribunal, found the Japanese government responsible for its violations of international conventions and customary international law during the war. The judges ruled that Japan violated its treaty obligations, including:
1) The 1907 Hague Convention Respecting the Laws and Customs of the Law on Land
2) The 1921 International Convention for the Suppression of the Traffic in Women and Children
3) The 1930 International Labor Organization Convention Concerning Forced Labor for perpetuating the comfort women system during the war.
Because the final judgment delivered on December 4, 2001 is 265 pages long, only the oral transcript is presented below:
Transcript of Oral Judgment delivered on 4 December 2001 by the Judges of the Women’s International War Crimes Tribunal on Japan’s Military Sexual Slavery