An unidentified 81-year-old South Korean man set himself on fire outside the Japanese Embassy in Seoul, Wednesday, just before Saturday's 70th anniversary celebrations marking the end of Japan's colonial rule over Korea.

The man, who was taken to hospital but whose current condition is unknown, was protesting about Japan's enforced use of Koreans as 'comfort women' during WW2 and the country's lack of apology and atonement. 'Comfort women' were forced into military brothels for the use of Japanese troops during the war and it left a particularly long-lasting and bitter legacy, at least in part because it took Japan so long to acknowledge what happened.

Japan insists the issue was finalized in 1965 when it handed over $800 million in grants and loans.

*I'm not certain if there has ever been an official apology for the brothels from Japan and that may be why emotions are still so high. WARNING photo at the link shows the man on fire.