Kishida regrets not having solved the problem of kidnappings


Minamisoma, Fukushima Prefecture, Sept. 17 (Jiji Press)–Japan’s failure to secure the further return of Japanese nationals abducted by North Korea since handing over five victims in 2002 is deeply regrettable, the Prime Minister Fumio Kishida.

As Saturday marked the 20th anniversary of Pyongyang’s declaration for a resolution to the North Korean abduction issue signed by then Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi and then North Korean leader Kim Jong Il, Kishida reiterated his determination to “directly confront” Kim Jong Un, the current leader of the reclusive nation, without attaching any preconditions, as well as to “seize every opportunity to act with full force”.

“As a government, we have to accept the sense of urgency expressed by the families (of the abductees) who are very keen on a resolution,” Kishida told reporters during a visit to the town of Minamisoma in the prefecture of Fukushima, northeast Japan.

“There is no change to our plan to resolve the issues of abductions, nuclear weapons and missiles based on the statement, and to normalize diplomatic relations,” he said.

While noting that Japan will cooperate with the United States and other countries, the prime minister said “it is very important for our country to take the lead.”

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press

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