The vague wording of Music Station's statement that "as a program, wanted to ask him his mentality in wearing it" leaves it unclear as to whether producers merely wanted a behind-closed-doors discussion before agreeing to have BTS on the show, or whether they were demanding to be allowed to ask Jimin, live on air, about his wardrobe choice.
BTS member Jimin reportedly wore the shirt previous year, on Aug 15, when Koreans celebrate the end of Japanese occupation in 1945. It's said that the photos were taken on National Liberation Day of Korea in 2017, which marks the end of World War II, and by extension Japan's occupation of Korea.
This year, the BTS became the first K-pop band to win a Billboard Music Award; the first K-pop act to sell out a U.S. arena; and broke the record for biggest music video debut, a distinction previously held by Taylor Swift.
They are one of South Korea's best-known musical exports, becoming the first K-pop performers to top the US Billboard 200 with "Love Yourself: Tear". There have been reports of discomfort caused by a T-shirt one of the band's members previously wore.
The Tokyo-based TV Asahi said it has made a decision to call off their performance Friday night on its Music Station program after asking the band's agency about the member's intention in wearing the shirt.More news: Xiaomi officially enters the United Kingdom with the Mi 8 Pro
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The term K-pop refers to domestic popular music in South Korea, which can be influenced by any number of different styles and genres. The problem is not the relation between Japan and Korea.
BTS has said in a statement over the the row: "We apologise for disappointing fans who were looking forward to this".
Unsurprisingly, BTS fans are pretty unhappy with the news.
Universal Music said it will continue to support BTS but confirmed their appearance on the live music show "Music Station" was canceled.
Last month, Tokyo reacted furiously after South Korea's top court ordered a Japanese steel giant to compensate victims of wartime forced labor programs. "This group is making fun of the atomic bombings". This was followed by another bomb being dropped on Nagasaki on 9 August.