The families of Japanese citizens abducted by North Korea have asked Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to take steps to bring their loved ones back home as soon as possible.
The family members met Abe at the Prime Minister's Office on Wednesday. The meeting came after US President Donald Trump took up the abduction issue with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un during the second summit talks in Vietnam late last month.
Abe told the family members that he wants to resolve the abduction issue based on the basic policy of seeking every possible opportunity. The prime minister said he is thinking that he himself should meet Kim next.
Shigeo Iizuka, who leads a group of abductees' families, said he is hopeful after hearing the prime minister's resolve to face North Korea by himself. He asked Abe to make continuous efforts to make progress in settling the issue.
Sakie Yokota, the mother of abductee Megumi Yokota, said she wants Abe to convey to the North Korean side the anger of the Japanese people and the sorrow of the abductees' families. She asked Abe to tell North Korea to take steps to secure a better future for each other's countries.
After the meeting, Takuya Yokota, younger brother of Megumi, told reporters that he wants the Japanese government to negotiate based on the stance that there could be no Japan-North Korea summit unless early return of all the abductees is assured.