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The 2015 agreement was "a promise between the two nations".

"We can by no means accept South Korea's unilateral request for additional measures".

Abe's remarks, the first from the Japanese leader since South Korean President Moon Jae-in called for the apology during a recent New Year's press conference, came despite Seoul not requesting a bilateral deal on the issue be renegotiated, Xinhua news agency reported.

Abe told reporters that the trip will further expand Japan's diplomacy.

Abe said that on his visit he is planning to reaffirm Japan's cooperations with these countries in matters concerning North Korea.

Mr Moon said a day later that Seoul will decide how to handle the money offered by Japan in consultations with the Japanese government and other relevent parties.

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One of the jumbo jets used by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe for his foreign trips lost a wing panel during a flight.

The victims' resistance and negative public sentiment toward the deal led the liberal government to order a thorough review of the accord, and a public-private task force concluded that the deal, signed under former President Park Geun-hye, had procedural flaws.

The South Korean side also believes that prior to the deal being made with Japan, those who served as "comfort women" were not sufficiently consulted and their feelings not fully taken into account at the time.

Under the deal, South Korea promised not to raise the issue again and Japan transferred 1 billion yen (now $8.9 million) to a foundation dedicated to supporting the victims.

Between 80,000 and 200,000 women, mostly from the Korean Peninsula but also from China, Taiwan and South-east Asia, had been recruited to provide sex to the Japanese Imperial Army during World War II. "The more the Korean government seeks to additionally consult with Japan on the comfort women issue, the worse its relation with Japan gets".

"We hope Japan addresses the concerns of its Asian neighbors and the worldwide community, and properly handles relevant issues with a responsible attitude", Lu said.

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