Bones of Contention

In 2002, Kim Jong Il deep-sixed relations with Japan by admitting that North Korea kidnapped 13 Japanese citizens in the 1970s and held them for decades. He tried repairing the damage by sending five of the abductees home in the following months. The remaining eight, according to North Korea, had died. Last November, Pyongyang returned to Japan the cremated ashes and bone fragments of Megumi Yokota, who was kidnapped in her hometown of Niigata in 1977 at the age of 13, and allegedly committed suicide in 1994. Tokyo ran DNA tests on the remains and announced they weren't Yokota's. Public...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!