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Kim Jong-nam arrived in Beijing, leaving for Pyongyang on May 5

Kim Jong-nam arrived in Beijing, leaving for Pyongyang on May 5

Posted May. 04, 2001 12:14,   


A man believed to be the eldest son of the North Korean leader Kim Jong-il arrived in China after being deported from Japan for trying to enter Japan with a false passport.

The man, with three other people, boarded All Nippon Airways flight to Beijing. The plane took off at 10:54 a.m. at the Narita International Airport and arrived in Beijing.

According to sources, they will stay at the North Korean embassy in Beijing until they go back to Pyongyang, North Korea, through Koryo flight in the early morning May 5.

The Chinese airport officials said, `Kim and his traveling companies occupied the whole first-class area on the second floor while on board and were not allowed any contact with other passengers`. `On their arrival they were greeted by the staff members of the North Korean Embassy in Beijing. Both Japanese and Chinese diplomatic officials entered inside of the plane`.

The Chinese airport officials had arranged security service around the airport since Friday morning (May 4) and the Chinese press did not report the case until May 4.

The Japanese government decided to deport Kim to China soon after the press released Kim`s arrest. However, without officially revealing Kim`s identity, the Japanese government took him and his family on board under the tight security.

This is interpreted as an diplomatic consideration to create a positive atmosphere for future diplomatic normalization between North Korea and Japan without unnecessarily provoking North Korea.

The Japanese government spokesperson Hukuda Yatso said, `The identity of man was not confirmed whether he is the son of North Korean leader Kim Jong-il or not. Because he carried a false passport, we decided to deport him accordingly.`

Shim Kyu-Sun ksshim@donga.com