Announcement by Chief Cabinet Secretary (The Return to Japan of the Five Japanese Nationals Abducted by North Korea and Their Family Members)
October 24, 2002
The Government of Japan has decided that it will pursue the following policy regarding the return to Japan of the five Japanese nationals abducted by North Korea and their family members.
1. The Government of Japan intends to create an environment in which the five abductees and their family members can freely make their own decisions, and in particular, considers the return to Japan of all their family to be essential and urgent.
2. The Government of Japan will let the five abductees remain in Japan, and regarding the family members who remain in North Korea, we will strongly urge North Korea to ensure the safety of them and to confirm their prompt return to Japan and the date for that return.
In case the date of return is not confirmed before the Japan-North Korea normalization talks on October 29-30, the Government of Japan will take this point up in the talks as the top priority item to clarify it.
In the normalization talks, the Government of Japan will also continue to strongly call on North Korea to clarify the facts concerning the abductees whose survival has not been confirmed.
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