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NK witnesses testify`Megumi died of overdose`

Posted November. 08, 2014 07:22,   


Testimony was made public that Megumi Yokota, an iconic symbol of Japanese kidnapped by North Korea in 1977, died from poisoning or overdose of medication by North Korea and her body was buried on a nearby hill along with other corpses without coffin. This fact was revealed during a confidential investigation by the Japanese government, which is pursuing North Korea-Japan negotiation to resolve the issue of Japanese abductees by the North.

The Shinzo Abe administration had been claiming that Megumi may be still alive and pursuing resolution of the Japanese abductee issue as a move for political breakthrough. The Abe administration’s claim was directly opposite to the argument of late North Korean leader Kim Jong Il, who said "Megumi committed a suicide" at the 2002 summit with then Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi. As the testimony has been revealed, the Abe administration, which has eased sanctions on North Korea and pursued negotiation with North Korea, will not be able to avoid criticism that the Japanese government was fooled by North Korea and is expected to face the biggest political crisis since its inauguration.

The Dong-A Ilbo exclusively obtained on Thursday a joint investigation report issued by the Japanese government’s abduction issue team and Choi Seong-yong, representative of South Korean abductee families. The report contains an interview with North Korean hospital staff who witnessed death of Megumi. In this report submitted to the Abe administration, the both Japanese and South Korean parties met with the two former hospital staff who worked at Pyongyang Hospital No. 49, a psychiatric hospital where Megumi died, in a third nation on Sept. 11. This fact would provoke a nation-wide controversy since the Abe administration has concealed the Megumi issue for two months, which has drawn great attention from the Japanese public.

According to the witnesses, Megumi died on April 10 in 1994 when she was 30 years old after hospitalization at a "special isolation ward," and was buried on a nearby hill on April 15. The witnesses said, “Megumi had been on medication of sedatives and sleeping pills, which were for mental illnesses, and also had injections.” The former hospital staff mentioned a specific name of sleeping pill and the dosage.

The witnesses said, “There were blue spots all over her body when Megumi died. It is a symptom of poisoning or overdosing of medication, or injection of excessive dose.” “(Megumi’s) Body was carried in a tractor cargo box with other five corpses under direction of the State Security Department in the (Workers`) party. Even without a coffin, she was buried in a pit with other dead bodies,” added the North Korean witnesses. This testimony is a key to the reason why DNA of remains that North Korea sent to Japan in 2004 was not matched with Megumi’s.