• Kyodo


Leaders of the Group of Eight major nations expressed support Thursday for Japan’s efforts to comprehensively resolve the issue of Japanese abducted by North Korea and the standoff over Pyongyang’s nuclear programs.

“We support the six-party talks as well as efforts by all concerned parties to achieve a comprehensive solution by diplomatic means to the DPRK nuclear issue and to other security and humanitarian issues, such as the abductions,” the G8 leaders said in the chairman’s summary, released after their annual summit, held this year on Sea Island, Ga., ended.

The Democratic People’s Republic of Korea is the official name of North Korea.

Six nations — China, Japan, North and South Korea, Russia and the United States — are seeking to convene a third round of talks on North Korea’s nuclear ambitions by the end of this month.

It was the second straight year that North Korea’s abductions of Japanese was mentioned in a statement issued at the G8 summit.

Japan and North Korea have progressed on the abduction issue since the last summit was held in Evian, France.

On May 22, Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi returned to Japan with the children of four repatriated abductees after visiting Pyongyang for talks with North Korean leader Kim Jong Il. He also obtained assurances from Kim that the whereabouts of 10 other missing Japanese would be reinvestigated.