Mainichi, Sankei, NHK, and all commercial networks reported that members of the Association of the Families of Victims Kidnapped by North Korea led by Yokota Takuya, the younger brother of abductee Yokota Megumi, met with Ambassador Emanuel at the Ambassador’s Residence on Monday. Sankei noted that the meeting took place at the request of the Ambassador. According to Mainichi, Yokota told the press after the meeting that he asked the United States “not to ease the powerful sanctions” on North Korea. According to Sankei, Yokota also said he felt greatly encouraged by the Ambassador’s remarks that the United States and Japan “will never forget this issue and will continue to make efforts until it is resolved.” According to the papers, 12 family members, including Yokota Sakie, the mother of Yokota Megumi, attended the meeting. Sankei said the meeting lasted for about an hour and each member expressed their thoughts to the Ambassador and asked for his cooperation in bringing the abductees home as soon as possible. Yokota also reportedly requested a meeting with President Biden whenever he visits Japan.
As for the request by the abductees’ families for a meeting with President Biden, TBS reported that Chief Cabinet Secretary Matsuno told the press on Monday afternoon that the GOJ will make efforts to arrange such a meeting because the families had met with President Obama and President Trump. The government spokesperson said the meeting may be arranged in late spring when the GOJ hosts a Quad summit.