March 17, 2014 08:07
The aging parents of a Japanese woman kidnapped by North Korean agents in 1977 have met their Korean-born granddaughter for the first time.
Japanese officials said Sunday that Shigeru Yokota and his wife Sakie spent several days with 26-year-old Kim Hye-gyong in Mongolia last week.
Kim's mother, Megumi Yokota, was kidnapped in Japan at the age of 13. She is believed to have married a South Korean man who also had been abducted to North Korea.
North Korea says Kim's mother committed suicide in 1994. But Tokyo has rejected the claim, saying Pyongyang is lying about the status of Japanese abductees who are still missing.
The kidnappings during the 1970s and 80s are a major issue standing in the way of relations between the two countries. North Korea admitted in 2001 that it had kidnapped numerous Japanese and South Koreans to train their spies.
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