Printer Friendly

LEAD: Abe says kin of abductees sent strong message to world.

TOKYO, May 1 Kyodo

(EDS: ADDING BACKGROUND IN LAST 7 GRAFS)

Chief Cabinet Secretary Shinzo Abe said Monday he believes a group of relatives of people kidnapped by North Korean agents sent ''a strong message to the world'' during their trip last week to the United States, which featured an appearance at a U.S. congressional hearing and a meeting with U.S. President George W. Bush.

In a meeting with Abe at the prime minister's official residence, Sakie Yokota, 70, the mother of abductee Megumi Yokota, said the meeting with Bush ''was unexpected but I could communicate my feelings firmly.''

''There may be a lot to be done but I hope to gain your support,'' she told Abe.

The relatives are working to pressure North Korea to release abducted people they believe are still in North Korea, including Japanese kidnapped in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

Abe said, ''It will be several times more effective for you people to make direct appeals than politicians meeting.''

''We will make diplomatic efforts for the resolution of the problem by working with the United States and other countries, and will apply pressure on North Korea through the United Nations and other channels in the international community,'' Abe said.

Yokota and other members of a Japanese delegation returned home Sunday from a weeklong trip to the United States in a bid to seek U.S. support for pressing North Korea to return all the abductees.

Yokota spoke before the U.S. Congress on Thursday and met Bush at the White House on Friday.

North Korea has admitted abducting Megumi Yokota, who was 13 when she disappeared in 1977 near her home in Niigata Prefecture.

North Korea maintains Megumi Yokota committed suicide in 1994 while being treated for depression. It said she had been married to a man named Kim Chol Jun and they had a daughter, Kim Hye Gyong.

The Japanese government recently said DNA analyses show the possibility is high that Yokota's husband may have been a South Korean man, Kim Young Nam, who was abducted in 1978 when he was 16.

Sakie Yokota and her husband Shigeru, 73, plan to visit South Korea to meet the family of the man.
COPYRIGHT 2006 Kyodo News International, Inc.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2006 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Publication:Japan Policy & Politics
Date:May 1, 2006
Words:370
Previous Article:LEAD: Mother of abductee says U.S. trip results 'more than expected'.
Next Article:Koizumi calls for cooperation in U.N. Security Council reform.


Related Articles
CORRECTED LEAD: N. Korea must give promise on abductees'...
Talks with N. Korea on ties, abductees can be separate: Abe.
Homecoming of abductees' kin a must before talks resume.
Abductees' kin rap N. Korea over 'fabrication' on Yokota's husband.
LEAD: Japan gets support from envoys to bring N. Korea's abductions to G-8.
Supporters of abductees to press case at U.N. Security Council.
Victims pin hopes on Abe Cabinet's focus on N. Korea abduction issue.
LEAD: Abe launches full gov't task force on N. Korea abductions.
3RD LD: Abe vows to study collective defense, build 'beautiful nation'.
Kyodo news summary.

Terms of use | Privacy policy | Copyright © 2021 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters |