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North Could Face Japanese Sanctions

Posted February. 11, 2006 06:33,   


Japan’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) has drawn up a draft bill tentatively named: “The North Korea Human Rights Bill” which calls for Japanese economic sanctions on Pyongyang if it fails to acknowledge its abduction of Japanese nationals and improve its human rights record.

The party’s task force that has been working on a possible economic sanctions bill against North Korea held a meeting on February 9 and decided to submit the bill to the National Diet. The draft bill spells out economic sanctions in detail, including a ban on North Korean boats from entering Japanese ports and the suspension of trade and money transfers.

It also designated December 16, the day the U.N. General Assembly adopted a resolution condemning North Korea’s human rights practices, as a “day to think about North Korea’s human rights violations.” Furthermore, it requires regular reports to the Diet on the cabinet’s efforts to bring back abducted Japanese, and cooperation with non-government organizations supporting North Korean defectors.

Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Shinzo Abe said, “In principle, Japanese diplomacy uses both dialogue and pressure. But given its lack of willingness to negotiate, Tokyo cannot help but consider various sanctions on Pyongyang.” Working-level talks between the two countries have shown no tangible results.

Won-Jae Park parkwj@donga.com