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North Korea

International Criminal Court refuses to prosecute North Korean leader Kim Jong-un ‘for abducting Japanese citizens’

The Hague-based court said it cannot open a case about incidents that happened before July 2007, so it won’t prosecute Kim for refusing to release the citizens his father and grandfather allegedly kidnapped

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 07 April, 2018, 2:13am
UPDATED : Saturday, 07 April, 2018, 3:50am

The International Criminal Court has turned down a petition to prosecute North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and others in the country’s leadership for the suspected abductions of Japanese citizens, a group of people involved said Friday.

The Hague-based court issued its response earlier this month to a lawyer for families of Japanese believed to have been abducted by North Korea and their supporters who submitted the petition in January, the group said.

The court dismissed the petition, saying that internal rules do not allow it to open a case about incidents that took place in Japan before July 2007.

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Following the rejection, the families and their supporters said they would make efforts to rescue all the abductees in light of the gravity of the issue.

In the petition, they called for an investigation into the suspected abductions of at least 100 Japanese as a case of crimes against humanity.

The petition said that while the abductions were carried out under the orders of North Korea’s deceased leaders Kim Il-sung and Kim Jong-il, the current leadership has not freed those kidnapped, nor has it provided information on their whereabouts or whether they are still alive.