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Yokota frustrated at stalled talks on abducted daughter's 58th birthday


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As a parent myself, I can not imagine the suffering she and all the other families who had loved one's abducted have gone through.

The inability of all the Japanese governments, mainly the LDP to do anything constructive, to bring this issue to an end, should shame them. Yet I believe that they really don't give a crap!

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

After Koizumi revisited Pyongyang in 2004, North Korea handed over to Japan cremated remains it claims to be those of Megumi, but they were later proven through DNA analysis not to be hers.

No they weren't. This is inaccurate information.

An interview in the 3 February 2005 issue of Nature revealed that the DNA analysis on Megumi's remains had been performed by a member of the medical department of Teikyo University, Yoshii Tomio. Yoshii, it later transpired, was a relatively junior faculty member, of lecturer status, in a forensic department that had neither a professor nor even an assistant professor. He said that he had no previous experience in the analysis of cremated specimens, described his tests as inconclusive, and remarked that such samples were very easily contaminated by anyone coming in contact with them, like "stiff sponges that can absorb anything". The five tiny samples he had been given to work on (the largest of them 1.5 grams) had anyway been used up in his laboratory, so independent verification was thereafter impossible.

The Japanese gov made this political with Chief Cabinet Secretary, Hiroyuki Hosoda, referred to this article as inadequate and a misrepresentation of the government-commissioned analysis, Nature responded in an editorial (17 March), saying that:[18]

Japan is right to doubt North Korea's every statement. But its interpretation of the DNA tests has crossed the boundary of science's freedom from political interference. Nature's interview with the scientist who carried out the tests raised the possibility that the remains were merely contaminated, making the DNA tests inconclusive. This suggestion is uncomfortable for a Japanese government that wants to have North Korea seen as unambiguously fraudulent. ...

The inescapable fact is that the bones may have been contaminated. ... It is also entirely possible that North Korea is lying. But the DNA tests that Japan is counting on won't resolve the issue. The problem is not in the science but in the fact that the government is meddling in scientific matters at all. Science runs on the premise that experiments, and all the uncertainty involved in them, should be open for scrutiny. Arguments made by other Japanese scientists that the tests should have been carried out by a larger team are convincing. Why did Japan entrust them to one scientist working alone, one who no longer seems to be free to talk about them?

Japan's policy seems a desperate effort to make up for what has been a diplomatic failure ... Part of the burden for Japan's political and diplomatic failure is being shifted to a scientist for doing his job—deriving conclusions from experiments and presenting reasonable doubts about them. But the friction between North Korea and Japan will not be decided by a DNA test. Likewise, the interpretation of DNA test results cannot be decided by the government of either country. Dealing with North Korea is no fun, but it doesn't justify breaking the rules of separation between science and politics.

This has turned into a political circus. The J-Gov screwed up when they contaminated the remains given to them. Thanks to them we will never know if in fact they were Megumi's remains or not. But to say that DNA analysis proved that the remains were not in fact hers is just plain false.

I'm not defending NK at all, but we do have to get our facts straight.

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

"The Japanese government's carelessness to do anything can only be called inaction," Takuya said as he urged more diplomatic efforts.

All I can say is that the situation seems contrived.

If not contrived then the only alternative to consider is that Japanese politicians are useless.

Judging from their keen ability for self aggrandizing and ability to amass money at a rate far higher than the average Japanese then this theory has to be discounted.


North Korea is a convenient scape goat that is easily used to draw attention away from any growing scandal or government screw up of the day.

Getting rid of North Korean problem would be extremely disadvantageous for the LDP…

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Feel sorry for the family but she is long gone and probably did pass away like the North said a long time ago.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

The families of the abductees are a tiresome group. They have had audiences with Prime Ministers and US presidents and lord only knows who else. They receive a substantial amount of government and wield far more political power than they deserve. Yes, it is a tragedy that their relatives were abducted but then if the really cared they might have done more to actual get them back instead of just hold and whine at press conferences. The Yokotas were/are the worst.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Anyone with deceased family members who were close, especially children, will always remember them and wish they were still close. I always remember my deceased first son on his birthday. He will always be in my heart for as long as I live. He was half Japanese.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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