Japan Mulls Seeking Its Own Summit With North Korea’s Kim

Abe keen to directly address questions about kidnapped Japanese

Last week, South Korea sent a delegation to North Korea’s Pyongyang to meet with Kim Jong-un, and the US announced an upcoming direct meeting between Kim and President Trump. Not one to be left out, Japan is reportedly considering seeking their own summit.

Abe Shinzo and Kim Jong-un

As with the US, the Japanese version, according to those familiar with the situation, would see Prime Minister Abe Shinzo meeting Kim directly. The topic of this meeting would be the fate of kidnapped Japanese citizens.

This is a common subject of discussion for the two nations, and one Abe has made a major issue. In the late 1970s and early 1980s, North Korea kidnapped at least 13 Japanese citizens, potentially more, to be used to train North Korean spies on infiltrating Japan.

Five of the kidnapped were already returned to Japan, and North Korea insisted those were the only ones still alive. Many in Japan believe there were more kidnapped than just the 13 admitted to, so this would likely be a major issue to press if sch talks happen.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for Antiwar.com. He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.