Japan Obtains Data of 20,000 Detainees in Siberia


Tokyo, May 14 (Jiji Press)--Japan's welfare ministry has acquired from Kazakhstan documents including the data of some 20,000 Japanese people who were detained by the former Soviet Union and forced to work mainly in Siberia after World War II, it was learned Tuesday.

The ministry plans to translate the documents and examine them in order to identify the detainees, officials said.

Just before the end of the war, a total of some 600,000 Japanese troops and civilians in Manchuria, now northeastern China, and other places were detained by the former Soviet Union. They were forced to work under severe conditions in Siberia, Central Asia, Eastern Europe and other places.

According to the ministry, the documents, stored in the national archives in Kazakhstan, which was part of the Soviet Union, include at least 10 categories of personal data, such as the detainees' names, birth places, professions and addresses before they were drafted by the Japanese military.

A ministry official was given information about the documents by the director of the archives in March last year and received copies of the documents in August.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press