South Korea lodged a protest over an editorial published by the International New York Times on Tuesday in which President Park Geun Hye is accused of downplaying Korean collaboration with Japanese colonialists from 1910 to 1945.
"We express strong regret that the New York Times has made such erroneous claims," Foreign Ministry spokesman Cho Tai Young said in a press briefing on Tuesday.
South Korea will "take necessary steps against the New York Times with regard to the erroneous facts," he said.
According to the editorial, titled "politicians and textbooks," "She wants to downplay Korean collaboration with the Japanese colonial authorities, and last summer pushed the South Korean Education Ministry to approve a new textbook that says those who worked with the Japanese did so under coercion."
The editorial said both Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and President Park are pushing to have high school history textbooks in their countries rewritten to cement their own political views.
The editorial also cited the family history of Abe and Park, noting that Abe's grandfather was Nobusuke Kishi, a suspected Class-A war criminal arrested by the Allied powers after Japan's defeat.
"Ms. Park's father, Park Chung Hee, was an Imperial Japanese Army officer during the colonial era and South Korea's military dictator from 1962 to 1979," the paper said.