North Korea - Kidnapped

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Documentary about the North Korean abductions of 17 Japanese citizens conducted by NK spies during 1970/80s, and families of these victims stories and struggle to have their son/daughter back from the North. Yet, after about 24 years of their disappearance, of these 17, only 5 were permitted to return to Japan on October 15, 2002, and so were their NK born children in May, 2004. The North Korean government has officially admitted kidnapping 13 Japanese citizens; but according to NGO, there may be as many as 100 Japanese citizens abducted by the North. Most of the missing were in their 20s, although the youngest, Megumi Yokota, was 13 when she disappeared in November 1977, from the Japanese west coast city of Niigata. The North Korean government claims that she committed suicide in March 1994. It is believed that the victims were abducted to teach Japanese language and culture at North Korean spy schools. Older victims were also abducted for the purpose of obtaining their identities, but these abductees are believed to have been killed immediately.[citation needed] It is also speculated that Japanese women were abducted to have them become wives to a group of North Korea-based Japanese terrorists after a 1970 Japan Airlines hijacking, and that some may have been abducted because they happened to witness North Korean agents in Japan, which may explain Yokota's abduction. For a long time, these abductions were denied by North Korea and were often considered a conspiracy theory. Despite pressure from Japanese parent groups, the Japanese government itself took no action. There are also claims that this issue is now being used by Japanese nationalists, including former Prime Minister Shinz? Abe, to "further militarize", push for revision of the Constitution in order to allow Japan to have an army, revise the Basic Education Law and forward other political goals. However, such claims have been criticized by Kyoko Nakayama, the special adviser in Tokyo to the Japanese prime minister on the abduction issue, who said "This is about rescuing our citizens (from ongoing abduction). They deserve all possible support to regain their freedom and dignity. It is our duty to retrieve them."

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1 Comments / User Reviews

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  • Guest

    An interesting documentary at a time when North Korea is in the news.

    Definitely grounds for Japan to militarize and address abduction of citizens from within their borders.      

    For those who have returned to Japan, their silence raises questions about the type of intimidation and threats they experienced when in North Korea.

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