Japanese leader accuses Australian church of discrimination

A Japanese-Australian community leader says he has filed a racial discrimination complaint against a Sydney church that he alleges has intimidated Japanese nationals by erecting a memorial to women forced to work as sex slaves by Japan's World War II army.

Tetsuhide Yamaoka, president of the Australia-Japan Community Network, said Thursday he had complained to the Australian Human Rights Commission about the prominent display of a statue of a so-called comfort woman from Korea in the grounds of the Uniting Church in suburban Ashfield.

The church's minister Bill Crews says the only change he would consider to the statue's position would be to display it more prominently.

Historians believe that as many as 200,000 girls and women from Korea, China and other occupied nations were forced into Japanese military brothels.