• Kyodo


The site of the former Tokyo headquarters of the pro-Pyongyang General Association of Korean Residents in Japan (Chongryon ) has been auctioned off for ¥5.01 billion, the Tokyo District Court said Thursday.

The successful bidder was the Avar Limited Liability Company, but basic information about the firm, including its location and the names of its representatives, was unknown. The bid will be approved by the court Tuesday.

Chongryun, which serves as North Korea’s de facto diplomatic mission in Japan in the absence of official diplomatic ties, could be forced to move out if asked by the winning bidder.

Only two bids were made in the second round of the auction from Oct. 3 to 10. In the first round earlier this year, a Buddhist temple in Kagoshima Prefecture bid ¥4.519 billion for the 10-story building with two basement floors on a 2,387-sq.-meter tract in Chiyoda Ward.

But the temple failed to pay by the deadline and was dropped. The temple’s chief priest is known to have close ties with senior officials in Chongryon and the North Korean government.

The court decided in July 2012 to auction the HQ after Chongryon was left owing ¥62.7 billion to Resolution and Collection Corp. after financial bodies serving pro-North residents collapsed.

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