No Progress Made over Abduction Issue 5 Years after Agreement

Politics

Tokyo, May 30 (Jiji Press)--No progress has been made on resolving the issue of Japanese citizens abducted by North Korea, five years after Pyongyang agreed to reopen an investigation into their whereabouts.

"The Stockholm Agreement is still in place," Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said at a parliamentary meeting on Wednesday, referring to the North Korean agreement made five years ago.

At a meeting in the Swedish capital in May 2014, Japan agreed to partially lift its unilateral sanctions against North Korea in exchange for Pyongyang's reinvestigation on the abductees.

In February 2016, however, North Korea declared the reinvestigation cancelled after Tokyo criticized Pyongyang's nuclear test and imposed unilateral sanctions against it. North Korea has yet to resume the reinvestigation despite Japan's request.

Suga said that the Stockholm Agreement "has opened the firmly locked door of negotiations and made North Korea exhibit its intention to resolve the (abduction) issue."

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press