• Kyodo

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The father of abductee Megumi Yokota said Saturday he will visit South Korea as early as next month to meet with the family of a South Korean man who may be his daughter’s husband.

Shigeru Yokota, 73, said in a speech in Chikuma, Nagano Prefecture, that the trip could take place after the Golden Week holidays from late April to early May.

DNA analyses conducted on relatives of the South Korean man, Kim Young Nam, who was a 16-year-old high school student when he disappeared in 1978, showed a high possibility that a blood relationship exists between him and Megumi Yokota’s 18-year-old daughter, Kim Hye Gyong, the Japanese government said last week.

North Korea has admitted its agents abducted Megumi Yokota from Japan in 1977 when she was 13, and says she married a man named Kim Chol Jun. Pyongyang claims she committed suicide in 1994 while being treated for depression.

Shigeru Yokota expressed hope that public sentiment on North Korea’s abductions will be raised in South Korea and other countries affected by the issue, mentioning the Thai woman is also believed to have been abducted to the North.

“North Korea is worried that the abductions will become a problem in the (affected) countries, and it would work to its disadvantage if the public sentiment in South Korea were raised,” he said.

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