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Abductee’s Dad to Meet Korean In-Laws

Posted May. 16, 2006 03:00,   


Shigeru Yokota (73), the father of Megumi Yokota who was kidnapped to North Korea, and her brother (37) visited Korea on May 15 to meet family of Kim Young-nam (then 16) who was an abducted high school student and has been confirmed as Megumi’s husband.

Shigeru entered through Gimpo Airport at 2:00 P.M. and said, “I look forward to meeting Kim’s family. I think we can deeply understand each other since we share sadness and frustration.”

He said, “I have brought her pictures in her childhood to tell them about her childhood. I want to tell them to make efforts together to address issues of abductees.”

They plan to meet Choi Kye-wol (82), Kim’s mother, and Kim Young-ja (48), his sister at a campaign urging the North to repatriate abductees and to legislate a special law to be held in Songpa-gu, Seoul on May 16.

When they meet, other families including Lee Min-kyo’s (then 18), Choi Seung-min’s (then 17) and Hong Geon-pyo’s (then 17) who were high school students and abducted to the North in 1977-1978, will also attend.

After hearing of the Megumi family’s visit to Korea, Choi Kye-wol said, “My son is still alive in the North, but their daughter died. They must feel heartbroken. I hope they would feel consoled after meeting us.”

Choi will visit Japan and attend a Lower House hearing with Choi Seong-yong, a representative of the Family Union of Abductees from the North, on May 27.

Kwang-Oh Kim weappon@donga.com kokim@donga.com