A Japanese court has ruled against a local Japanese government’s decision not to allow a memorial in honor of Korean victims of Japan’s wartime forced labor to remain in place in the region. 

Japan’s Kyodo News reported on Wednesday that a Maebashi city court in the Gunma Prefecture judged that the Gunma Prefecture government's decision in 2014 to revoke approval of the monument was illegal.

The memorial was set up in 2004 in a park managed by the prefecture to commemorate the Koreans who were taken to Japan against their will.

The prefecture was known have taken issue with the monument over its supporters' criticisms against the Japanese government and their use of the term "forced labor," which the Japanese government is reluctant to admit. 

After the prefectural government refused to renew approval for the memorial in 2014, a support group filed a lawsuit against the decision, saying it breached the constitutional rights of freedom of expression.