Nov 25, 2017

Boat washed ashore with N. Koreans disappears at Japan port

Boat washed ashore with N. Koreans disappears at Japan port photo

AKITA, Japan - A fishing boat carrying eight North Korean men that was washed ashore in northeastern Japan has disappeared at the port where it was moored, police said Saturday.

The police said they are not sure immediately whether the 20-meter wooden vessel submerged at the port in Akita Prefecture or drifted outside the breakwater to the Sea of Japan.

The North Korean men told local authorities that they were fishing before the boat's engine failed. They are not expected to seek asylum in Japan.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said at a press conference on Friday that the government will "respond appropriately." Japan has no diplomatic relations with North Korea.

The men told investigators that they left a port in North Korea about a month ago for squid fishing and were scheduled to return home in a few weeks, but were cast adrift following engine failure.




Kyodo News Plus is an online publication delivering the latest news from Japan. Kyodo News Plus collaborates with City-Cost to bring those stories related to lifestyle and culture to foreigners resident in Japan. For the latest news updates visit the official site at https://english.kyodonews.net