national

Gov't to set up 7 panels to deal with abduction issue

56 Comments

The Japanese department in charge of the issue of abductions of Japanese citizens by North Korea announced plans this week to create seven subcommittees to be more proactive in resolving the issue.

Led by Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda, the government task force for the abduction issue said it plans to go on the offensive in light of North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Il’s death. The seven panels will be mobilized to gather information and work toward a solution to the problem that many Japanese citizens say hasn’t received enough attention in the past.

Relatives of the abductees have called on the government to take advantage of the transition of power in North Korea to approach Pyongyang on reopening the investigation.

The subcommittees will meet over the course of about two months, and will focus on strategy, enforcement, international cooperation and other themes. Each subcommittee will be headed by a senior vice minister.

Noda said, “Given the current North Korea situation, I want to lay out guidelines and strengthen our ability to resolve this issue," NHK reported.

Noda has already asked Chinese and South Korean leaders to tell North Korea’s new leadership that it “must make progress” in addressing the aduction issue if bilateral ties are to be improved.

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56 Comments
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Year-End Fantasy.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

7 panels ????????????

5 ( +9 / -4 )

7 panels ????????????

yes, only seven :)

2 ( +8 / -6 )

more mis-spent money and time. 7 panels??????

3 ( +7 / -4 )

Brilliant idea - 7 panels each of whom probably won't know what the others doing thereby wasting time and resources further. Obviously it would make too much sense to set-up one panel that has clear objectives...

5 ( +9 / -3 )

Jobs for the boys, seven budgets and how many people per panel? More people more meetings...no results.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

Brilliant - More gaijins commenting on something they neither understand or have folloed throuh the years, Funnily enough there is some14some making negative comments!! haha.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

Here we go, the loony left have come out the woodwork

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

I am Japanese - this is not the same country as it was up to 1945.Japanese Nationals were literally lifted off the streets here and shipped to the DPRK. Since then, they have lied about how many people they actually took, lied abotu the way they died just to start the ball rolling. I don't care if there are 10 panels set up to further investigate this issue. One person is too many, so using the word 'tiny' to describe the abductions is very insulting.

-4 ( +6 / -10 )

I see, I never called it tiny by the way. Every year another inquiry or panel now panels are set up seems an inconsistent response for a consistent domestic issue. DPRK is not a rational state to begin with so closure on this may never truly be resolved. Good luck to the families and it's a terrible thing but 7 panels would seem to complicate and extend the chance of any resolution of this issue.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

As much as I have sympathy for the families of those who were abducted, the likelihood is that those who were still alive are those that came back. The rest are probably dead.

It would be nice to welcome NK into the international fold, and the abduction issue is one of the issues that will likely need to be forgiven for that to happen.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Indeed, the fact that the DPRK is not a rational state only makes it more important to keep the momentum up on this issue. Apologies Cricky, it was mitoguitarman who called the number 'tiny' This is a story that stretched on since the 1970's and will probably never reach a satisfying conclusion for anyone.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Why seven panels?

It looks like each panel is being asked to concentrate on one specific topic and then report back to the main committee. The main committee wants to take advantage of the transfer of power to Kim Jong-Un and press the abductee issue, hence, setting up advisory panels.

I doubt, however, in two months the panels will come up with anything new. The main committee should just start pressing Kim Jong-Un now, if they want to.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

I never thought flogging a dead horse would make such diverting political theater. Diverting only if you're Japanese, of course.

A nuclearized NK.

A drug-peddling NK.

A counterfeiting NK.

And Japanese go on about the abductions, an issue that can never be satisfactorily settled.

-2 ( +2 / -3 )

Yes Nessie - so, as you are not Japanese I wouldn't expect you to understand and/or comment. Tool.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The ethnocentric myopic thinking that some Japanese show with regards to issues that affect their country is puzzling to say the least. This isn't the dark ages we are living in, yet comments like this just further the polarization that foreigners feel and think about Japanese people. It comes across as very arrogant to say the least.

4 ( +5 / -2 )

I thought the govt was trying to cut wasteful spending? I sympathise with those who have loved ones abducted by the DPRK but 7 panels is not going to solve an issue that has been going on for years and may never be solved because the DPRK refuses to acknowledge the fact!!! Yet again more wasteful spending when there are those in the Tohoku region who need help!!!!!

3 ( +5 / -2 )

It's more of an issue about hypocrisy than anything else.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Read the title and thought this was about the Hague. Silly girl.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

7 is a lucky number.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

One issue, seven panels, no concensus.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

man its painful enough watching Japan screw this issue up & mess up the nuke talks etc, but now by adding 7 more committees that will mess things up even more than usual by a factor of 7, this non-sense will actually pretty much ensure nothing further happens, no new info etc

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

the Resident~ I totally feel for the families involved but 7 panels. How about one panel that doesn't waste taxpayer's money. One where all information is gathered and utilized to actually forge progress with this sensitive matter. Seven panels to appease the public but the actual families probably won't benefit from it at all. I am sorry but it just looks like a whole lot of hot air to me.

One dedicated 'thinktank' of a team is all that is necessary. Not 7 panels of folk bungling about, releasing reports a year on that a high school kid could have told us at the taxpayer's expense!

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

@Tmarie~ silly me too! I thought it was about the 'other' abduction/ kidnapping issue at first too!

0 ( +3 / -3 )

I feel for the families. What a strain to have to live each day, not knowing exactly what happened to your child, where closure is impossible because there's always that tiny sliver of a chance that some unexpected development could occur, some letter, photograph, or some spy coming out with a new story. It's just never ending for them.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Spot on oginome - which is why this matter can never be dropped or forgotten about. DPRK denied they had abducted ANYONE for years unitl Koizumi went there and secured the release of some of them. It took an additional 2 years to get their children out.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

They need 7 panels because 6 is not enough, why because i singular entity can accomplish nothing in this country it must all be done by a group, therefore they are going to have 7 groups which will be even more powerful.

All they need is one strategically placed missile to resolve this abduction issue but then again maybe they would need 7 !

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Pay day for some lucky politicians

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Does these so called' abductees' ever borned in Japan? It seems like the japanese government is chasing a mirage of oasis in desert!

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

Why not just offer a monetary reward for each of the abducted's return or DNA-confirmed remains?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@just-a-guy:

Yes, these abductees were and are still considered Japanese citizens, and they are real. They were kidnapped from Japan in 1945 to train NK spies the Japanese language and way of life. Several of the abductees have been released back to Japan, but reports from the released abductess point hope that there are still some that are alive.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Every year I see the parents of Megumi xxxxx (sorry, I forget her last name) who was kidnapped as a young girl on TV, and I feel for them. Every year they get a little older, and a little frailer, and still dont know what happened to her. The bones they returned claiming to be Megumi did not match her DNA profile - so they have obviously lied about her. For what purpose? She is obviously still alive, because were she dead they would have sent the correct remains, surely?

1 ( +3 / -2 )

elvensivan

pretty sure most of this took place in the 70s not at the end of WWII

Nicky,

I dont think its likely nk keep many accurate records or keep track where many are buried, cremated or whatever, so who knows if they were out to lie about the bones from the start or whatever, who thing is a mess for sure, likely no end in sight unfortunately

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Samantha Zoe Aso -

the Resident~ I totally feel for the families involved but 7 panels. How about one panel that doesn't waste taxpayer's money. One where all information is gathered and utilized to actually forge progress with this sensitive matter. Seven panels to appease the public but the actual families probably won't benefit from it at all. I am sorry but it just looks like a whole lot of hot air to me. One dedicated 'thinktank' of a team is all that is necessary. Not 7 panels of folk bungling about, releasing reports a year on that a high school kid could have told us at the taxpayer's expense!

Quoted for truth. Yes, I agree with you 100%. This is just political theatre for the benefit of the right-wing crowd. Even one person set aside for this purpose won't make any difference.

This, along with the 35-year occupation of Korea by Japan, are hot topics that enrage all the countries involved.

It's disappointing to see money wasted on extra personal when there are still tsunami victims and an ongoing nuclear crisis.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Japan on North Korea-related issues: "Forest? What forest? All I see are trees. How am I supposed to see a forest with all these trees in the way?"

Playing up this issue is completely just pandering to the dumb masses on the part of Japanese politicians and the government. Its a dramatic issue with an easy-to-understand story behind it--who wouldn't feel for people who have been dragged to another country against their will, and the families who in some cases still don't know what happened. But, there's a larger perspective at work; and mature countries don't let a soap opera or weepy melodrama decide their foreign policy. I don't know precisely how many Japanese were abducted by North Korea, but I know it is less than the number of North Koreans who die of starvation or are killed by the Kim regime in any given year. Its definitely less than the number who would be killed if a conflict, particularly a nuclear conflict, broke out in the region because of NK (it is not even necessary to bring up the colonial era). But it sometimes seems like Japanese wouldn't mind in northeast Asia was consumed in a sea of fire as long as they remained firm on the abduction issue. Let's get to work on making NK open up, give up nuclear arms, and become a less paranoid and totalitarian country--thats a challenge deserving at least seven panels. If the abduction issue doesn't help advance that goal, maybe it shouldn't be played up so much.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Haha, why so many panels!

They gotta get their act together, rather than splitting it into 7 or how many panels.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

SEVEN panels??? For what? What are all these people going to find that no one else here has found yet? This is just a popularity point grab, and at the expense of everyone.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

1 Koizumi > 7 panels

2 ( +2 / -0 )

TheResident: "DPRK denied they had abducted ANYONE for years unitl Koizumi went there and secured the release of some of them. "

The talks between Koizumi and NK government when he visited Pyong-Yang were a milestone not only in relations between Japan and NK, but in Asia, and arguably the world. Sadly, when Japanese media took the chance to jump on admittance of abduction as a reason for reneging on promises that would have helped things further along the road, it destroyed any and all progress made to date on fixing ties, and any and ALL chance of finding out more about the abductees. What has Japan done since then? Well, aside from derailing six-party talks by insisting the abduction issue take the limelight (for the benefit of the easily duped right-wingers), not much aside from paying hundreds of thousands to former NK spies who more than easily pander to said media. Seven panels will do nothing but create a HUGE loss of money and give more false hope to those poor people who have already lost so much... and all for political points!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@horrified. Thank you!

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Well, aside from derailing six-party talks by insisting the abduction issue take the limelight

Smith

For the upteenth time, the six party talk consists of several working groups which includes denuclearization and normalization between NK/Japan. For the former, all six nations representative are involved. As for the latter, this is just between NK and Japan representatives. To put it simply, Japan cannot and does not bring up the abduction matter to the former working group.

"In principle, progress in one WG shall not affect progress in other WGs".

0 ( +3 / -3 )

nigelboy: And for the umpteenth (not 'upteeth') time, the six-nation talks are about denuclearization of NK, not about a resolved bilateral issue. Tough to digest, I know... but quite easy to understand.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

""In principle, progress in one WG shall not affect progress in other WGs"."

nigelboy: Why on earth would you post something so utterly hypocritical? as a defense of your argument? You literally shot down your own arguments so badly they can never be posted again! Well done! And yes, congrats on realizing that Japan should not bring up the issue of abduction in the six-party talks. Well done.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

the six-nation talks are about denuclearization of NK, not about a resolved bilateral issue. Tough to digest, I know... but quite easy to understand.

False. Six nation party talks also includes normalization between NK and U.S.

nigelboy: Why on earth would you post something so utterly hypocritical? as a defense of your argument? You literally shot down your own arguments so badly they can never be posted again! Well done! And yes, congrats on realizing that Japan should not bring up the issue of abduction in the six-party talks. Well done.

Let me dumb it down for you.

"In principle, the progress in denuclearization of Korean Peninsula (a WG) shall not affect the progress in Normalization of U.S./NK, Normalization of Japan/NK, .Economy and Energy Cooperation, Northeast Asia Peace and/or Security Mechanism (other WGs"

0 ( +3 / -3 )

nigelboy: "False. Six nation party talks also includes normalization between NK and U.S."

For how many nations? Geez it's amazing how badly you negate your own arguments sometimes!

"Let me dumb it down for you."

Perhaps you ought to dumb it down for yourself? you don't seem to understand your own self-contradictions.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

nigelboy: six nations means six nations, not two. Now I will admit I absolutely suck at math, but feel free to tell me how six equals two.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Seriously... one of the most sickening things about this culture is that they don't see the promises to look into the abduction issue for what it is: popularity points. What would happen if Noda continued on the "let's increase consumption tax" and nothing else being said vs. "Let's increase consumption tax" and (oh crap, no one liked that idea) so "Let's form seven panels". Politics... that's all it is. Noda and the seven panels don't care one iota about the supposed abductees, they just want points in a time when points are hard to get. If you believe they are honest, please do find me in the forums and I'll sell you a bridge for NOTHING.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

This is the epitome of hypocrisy.

Plain and simple.

S

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Under the agreed framework of Six party talks, there are sets of working groups that were established with various goals which is not limited to denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. Hence, if you are referring to the denuclarization part, all six nations' representatives participate. However, a Japanese representative for this particular working group have not and will not bring up the abduction issue.

There have been ZERO cancellation of the denuclearization group talks due to Japan's insistence on resolving the abduction issue. This, of course, is obvious since the issue is separate as well as the fact that there is a SEPARATE working group in place to discuss this particular issue, namely a WG which consists of Japan and NK only under Normalization of Japan/NK

1 ( +3 / -2 )

"In principle, the progress in denuclearization of Korean Peninsula (a WG) shall not affect the progress in Normalization of U.S./NK, Normalization of Japan/NK, .Economy and Energy Cooperation, Northeast Asia Peace and/or Security Mechanism (other WGs"

nigelboy,

you need to learn the difference between ""in principle"" & "" in reality"", you keep harping about documents, statements & the like but totally ignore the reality of whats happening/going on. Japan put a HUGE damper on the entire 6party talks, on ALL THE TALKS back when those abductees surfaced. To an extent thats forgiveable considering the sudden turn of events, but down the road Japan totally sabotaged further progress, thats the REALITY of it.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

While 2 1/2 million Japanese children have permanently lost their parents due to the actions of the family courts of Japan. Where one of every five people in Japan have had their lives gravely, adversely, directly affected by state sanctioned child abduction and parent removal, Japanese people continue to be subjected to an endless stream of internal diversionary propaganda about N. Korean abductions.

Moderator: You're on the wrong thread. The two issues are not even remotely related.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

7 Panels, 21 committees, 63 sub-committies, 129 working groups......we can look for real progress on this issue now.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

BPrager,

Bang on man!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

GW,

You are right. "In principal" as opposed to "in reality" are totally different. But unless you can prove this in regards to the six party talks, your opinion carries absolutely no weight. I would appreciate very much if you could provide any evidence to your argument. Your cooperation is very much appreciated.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

nigelboy,

thats easy, go back to my post at 12:01 & read it, see, thats no different than what you do all the time, you go off & find some link, statement, a blurb somewhere, well now my 12:01 does as well as any of the stuff you dig up.

As to whether thats how we each perceive reality, hey we each get to decide that one! Me personally I tend to give little weight to most of the crap J-govts have put out over the decades, compared to what went down it tends to be most unreliable, but hey if you want to believe THAT tooth fairy go ahead, oh & happy new year!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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