• Kyodo


Repatriated abductee Kaoru Hasuike began a full-time job Friday at Niigata Sangyo University, while the daughter of two other returnees from North Korea started at a bank in Fukui Prefecture.

Hasuike, 47, who had been teaching Korean part time at the university in Kashiwazaki, Niigata Prefecture, has been given a full-time contract position and will take on such additional tasks as helping foreign students, university officials said.

“The coming year is an important one that will determine my future path. I feel very motivated,” said Hasuike, who has been reading Korean textbooks and watching South Korean dramas to maintain his Korean language ability.

Hasuike’s daughter, Shigeyo, 23, and son, Katsuya, 20, both attend the university and are studying Japanese, while his wife, Yukiko, 48, continues to work part time for the Kashiwazaki Municipal Government.

In Obama, Fukui Prefecture, Emi Chimura, the 23-year-old daughter of Yasushi and Fukie Chimura, both 49, began her job at Obama Shinkin Bank with a welcoming ceremony she attended with five other new employees, according to city officials.

During the ceremony, Chimura introduced herself in Japanese and listened to a speech by a senior bank official, they said.

She is slated to work in the general affairs department after training.

The Chimuras’ two sons will start school this month. Yasuhiko, 21, will go to the University of Fukui and Kiyoshi, 17, will attend Wakasa High School.

The two couples were allowed to return to Japan in October 2002 along with fellow abductee Hitomi Soga, nearly a quarter century after they were abducted by North Korea in 1978 in three separate cases.

Pyongyang allowed the Hasuike and Chimura children to join them in Japan in May.

In July, Soga reunited with her husband, U.S. Army deserter Charles Jenkins, and their two North Korea-born daughters in Indonesia, after which they came to Japan.

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