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U.N. human rights chief vows support for Japan's effort to resolve abduction by NKorea

U.N. human rights chief vows support for Japan's effort to resolve abduction by NKorea

U.N. human rights chief Louise Arbour promised more active international support to resolve North Korea's abduction of Japanese and other foreign nationals after meeting with the families of those still missing Friday.
Arbour, the U.N. high commissioner for human rights, said it was important to raise global awareness of the abductions, and pledged greater support that would include organizing photo exhibits and promoting a film on the issue, according to Japanese Foreign Ministry and Cabinet officials.
North Korea has admitted abducting Japanese citizens decades ago to train communist spies in Japanese language and customs. Pyongyang returned five of them to Japan, but claims the others have died.
The issue is a major source of tension between North Korea and Japan and has kept the two neighbors from establishing diplomatic relations.
The abductees' families on Friday praised recent U.N. efforts to step up pressure on North Korea's human rights issues, but urged further backing.
"I believe that accumulation of small but steady effort would help increase international awareness of the abduction issue, and that would serve as pressure for North Korea," Takuya Yokota, younger brother of kidnap victim Megumi Yokota, told reporters after meeting with Arbour.
Megumi disappeared from a northern Japanese coast in 1977 on her way home from school.
The U.N. General Assembly adopted a convention last year on the protection of people from abduction and justice for victims, citing North Korea's abductions.


Updated : 2021-04-19 20:03 GMT+08:00