On August 25, 2016, Japanese nationalist group Toronto Seiron hosted presentations by Shiro Takahashi and Shinichi Tokunaga who also spoke at Himawari Japan Lectures (2016) two days earlier. Takahashi spoke about preserving Japanese pride while living outside Japan, while Tokunaga discussed his lawsuit against Asahi Shimbun over its coverage of comfort women issues.
Toshie Marinov (マリノフ利江) is a Japanese woman from Ibaraki living in Toronto, Canada and a comfort women denier. Along with her husband Miroslav Marinov and fellow Toronto Seiron member Sharon Isac, she spearheads Japanese war crime denial in Toronto.
Marinov has been active in Japanese right-wing circles for a long time, with online commentaries dating back to at least 2011 and published articles in right-wing publications in more recent time. In addition, she translated her husband Miroslav’s article to Japanese, and Japanese right-wing activists’ speech at the United Nations to English.
Toronto Seiron (トロント正論の会) is a group made up of Japanese nationalists and comfort women deniers in Toronto, Canada. Leaders include Sharon Isac and Toshie Marinov, both Japanese women married to Canadian citizens.
In August 2016, Toronto Seiron hosted Shiro Takahashi and Shinichi Tokunaga, who also spoke at Himawari Japan Lectures (2016) in New York City, to present about the comfort women issue and “preserving Japanese spirit” while living outside of Japan.
Earlier in the same month, members of Toronto Seiron also infiltrated a memorial tribute to the victims of Hiroshima atomic bomb attack with offensive signs calling for Japan’s re-armament and denying Nanking atrocities.
Miroslav Marinov is the author of two self-published non-fiction books and a comfort women denier. He is married to a Japanese woman, Toshie Marinov, who is also a comfort women denier affiliated with Nadeshiko Action. Miroslav Marinov’s article on UNESCO has appeared in Seiron, a monthly conservative opinion magazine published by the Sankei Shimbun company.
In 2016 he authored a letter critical of the UNESCO Memory of the World Register in general and of the proposal to introduce historical documents on comfort women to the Register in particular. The letter was sent on behalf of the Canada-Israel Friendship Association, for which Marinov is a board member, even though it is not clear if anyone other than Marinov is involved in the comfort women denial.
One of Marinov’s arguments in the letter was that comfort women cannot be “sex slaves” because some comfort women were paid for their service (before they were taken away to repay debt and pay for necessities) and therefore the Japanese military comfort women system is not comparable to the war crimes of the Nazi Germany. He however neglects the fact that the Nazi Germany introduced currency systems at many of its concentration camps, paying incarcerated laborers tokens for the work they performed in order to increase productivity and reduce riots.
Sankei Shimbun promoted Marinov’s letter as an evidence that international Jewish community agreed with Japan’s right-wing historical revisionists, but failed to mention Marinov by name or the fact that he was a contributor to its magazine while reporting about it.
In addition to Japanese war crime denial, his personal blog is filled with racist and otherwise hateful attacks on African Americans/Canadians, Muslims, LGBTQ people, and others. He crowd-funded his previous books claiming that he suffered from censorship by politically correct editors at mainstream publishing industry.
Sharon (Mikiko) Isac is a Japanese woman who lives in Canada. Isac is a member of far-right Canadian Patriotic Society and a frequent contributor to anti-Islamic hate sites. She is also a comfort women denier who spoke at a denier panel organized by Nadeshiko Action at the UN Commission on the Status of Women NGO Parallel Events (2016) and helped to translate (badly) Nadeshiko Action’s publication, “Comfort Women Issue: From Misunderstandings to Solution,” authored by Yumiko Yamamoto and Kiyoshi Hosoya.