Japan lifts some North Korea sanctions amid report of surviving abductees
Friday, July 04, 2014 - 01:26
Japan decides to ease some sanctions on North Korea in return for its reopening of a probe into the fate of Japanese citizens abducted by the reclusive state decades ago. Sarah Toms reports.
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The relatives of Japanese citizens kidnapped decades ago by North Korea wait expectantly for news from their Prime Minister.
Shinzo Abe is visiting them one day after Tokyo eased sanctions on Pyongyang.
(SOUNDBITE) (Japanese) JAPANESE PRIME MINISTER, SHINZO ABE, SAYING:
"We, on the Japanese side, must be prepared and keep a close and active watch on the negotiations and how the investigations are proceeding. We must also demand that a good result ensues."
The two countries restarted dialogue after North Korea agreed to reopen an investigation into the fate of Japanese nationals kidnapped in the 1970s and 1980s to train spies.
The North's state-run broadcaster KRT aired a bulletin on Friday confirming the probe.
Pyongyang admitted in 2002 to kidnapping 13 Japanese citizens. Some were still at school at the time.
Here the five victims -- can be seen -- returning to emotional scenes in Japan. North Korea said the others were dead.
Japan disputes it.
This is the first step toward repairing long chilled ties between the two countries.
Pyongyang, has a history of reneging on deals. But these families are hoping this time they'll get some answers and find out what happened to their missing relatives.
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