Thursday, August 14, 2008

Fresh probe into the fate of Japanese nationals abducted by North Korea

The Japan Times reports that Japanese experts welcomed Wednesday's developments between Japan and North Korea in Shenyang, China, as critically important, but also warned that Japan should not be in a rush to lift sanctions.

"North Korea pledged to deliver results in its reinvestigation of its abduction of Japanese nationals by this fall, which is a very short time span. This reflects their strong determination to make progress on the issue," said Masao Okonogi, professor at Keio University and an expert on North and South Korean politics.

Meanwhile the Daily Yomiuri reports that this latest accord between Japan and North Korea regarding a planned fresh probe into the fate of Japanese nationals abducted by North Korea has given Tokyo cause for modest hope that the dispute could take a new turn for the better.

It should be noted, however, that the reclusive state has repeatedly been dishonest in responding to proposals and demands from Japan concerning how to resolve abduction-related issues, including the fate of those kidnapped by North Korean agents. If the situation unfolds in a manner unfavorable to Japan, observers said, the government could draw fire for its latest decision to end some sanctions imposed on North Korea if and when that country launches a fresh investigation into the fate of the abductees.

No comments: