• Kyodo


An application to travel to Japan was filed Thursday on behalf of a 27-year-old North Korea-born woman whose father was among nine Japanese Red Army Faction members who hijacked a Japan Airlines jetliner to Pyongyang in 1970, one of her supporters said.

Acting on behalf of Rei Shibata, who does not have a Japanese passport, supporters applied for a special travel permit at the Japanese Embassy in Beijing. Shibata hopes to come to Japan on June 13. The rest of her family is already in the country.

Shibata’s Japanese mother, returnee Megumi Yao, confessed in a Japanese court to being involved in the 1983 abduction of Keiko Arimoto to North Korea from Europe.

Her father, now 53, was arrested in 1988 and finished serving prison time in 1994.

The couple’s other daughter, who is 25 and was also born in North Korea, has been in Japan since 2004, but Shibata’s trip has been delayed due to health problems, according to the supporter.

In a time of both misinformation and too much information, quality journalism is more crucial than ever.
By subscribing, you can help us get the story right.