tv Hudson Institute Discussion on Abduction Issues in North Korea CSPAN May 6, 2019 9:38pm-11:29pm EDT
it's about the belief that you have in the constitution and fundamental beliefs about the rule of law and the belief that we are a people brought together by those beliefs. where you come from coming your skin color, religion, those -- >> what it means to be an american to me is the kind of power i have i can vote and do a lot of things but i feel so blessed and lucky to have been born at this time and in this country. >> it's being able to enjoy the freedoms and rights and liberties and also celebrating our diversities and trying to increase the rights and liberties for all. >> next the family of people
abducted to north korea described efforts to be reunited. the mother of college student and person to north korea in 2016 and released back to the u.s. in a coma before dying shortly after. from the hudson institute, this is just under two hours. >> ladies and gentlemen, can you hear me? i'm from the american enterprise institute and i'm going to be your moderator today about rigor from outside. it's an honor for me to be part of this event. for translation, english, channel one, japanese, channel
two, korean, channel three. i think we have compelling testimony and commentary for you today. if i could leave you with two thoughts david bbs number one, you will see that the abduction issue is not a small sectarian only issue. north korean abductions of innocent civilians occur victim populations the world over. this is an organized state run crime syndicate. point number two, the north korean government does not abduct innocent victims from nations abroad as a sort of
random unusual predilection of the state. the violation of human rights that you learn about from world wide abductions is it's in the dna of the north korean state, and it is the same contempt for innocent victims abroad that you see visited upon the hapless subject of north korean state and also that you see in north korea's belligerent behavior in the nuclear crisis internationally. at this point, let me turn over the podium to the three cochairman. >> thank you very much, nic.
you've written widely and with deep insight spoken on this critical issue for some time to come. good morning. i am kenneth weinstein president and ceo of hudson institute. a bit of housekeeping before we get underway i want to welcome our viewers on c-span. i want to welcome to viewer then japan and the audience here. if you are using the headset, go to channel one channel one, japs channel two, korean is channel three. there was a timely conference in north korea with our friends in the government of japan. japan has been critical to the hudson institute for more than half a century by the first to predict the rise of an economic superpower and over the last few
weeks we've inaugurated the chair in the asia-pacific security chair as well with increased dedication to the critical importance of the us-japan alliance. we have a long history of work in north korea this is an issue that has profound growth segments for the hudson institute. the senior vice president of scooter libby will be moderating the second panel worked this issue at the white house at the pentagon and here at the hudson institute in her days at "the wall street journal" editorial pages since hudson institute as well and jack david serves to bring us together for the support in the conference. we are honored to have five members with us this morning.
akira sato -- here are the latest of a long series of nature japanese dignitaries who visit including the national security adviser who visited with us yesterday. but we are most especially honored to have the families of the abductees with us today. you've shown grace and dignity and personal pag pain to see thm again or to their memories and ensuring that this issue remain on the and i want to single out all you've done to reap these
issues and cindy warmbier, two of the incredible memory of your son, otto. michael sneddon whose brother david was kidnapped 15 years ago, and a 2-year-old had his father kidnapped and now this immense and profound and unimaginable personal pain is something you live with every day it's very much on our minds today and every moment when there is a critical period of negotiation between north korea and the west we have seen in the summit recently concluded without much progress it should be noted, and the question for
us today should we see concrete progress on the abduction issue and on japanese north korean relations on the relations and beyond which are central come and how central is the issue to moving relations forward and progress on these negotiations. without any further ado, i am pleased now to a turnover to greg scarlatoui, human rights north korea. >> distinguished ladies and gentlemen, i am delighted to meet you today. it is an honor and a privilege to cohost the landmark conference together with our colleagues at the hudson institute and the government of japan. our organization is also home to be in the prison of the family
members from japan and south korea. they've been through sorrow and haven't wavered from turning their sorrow into meaningful action from joining us. this established 18 years ago by a group of scholars and private sector representatives all human rights visionaries, two of them represented today in organization that has been dedicated exclusively to the researching reporting on the human rights situation. since 2001 we published 40
records. the role in the growing international network of the human rights humanitarian assistance and policy organizations connected to opening up and revealing north korea to most of the world. we've been researching and investigating the abduction of japanese nationals to other countries by north korea for more than a decade and after research and close collaboration with friends and colleagues in japan and other countries, they've taken to this day the most comprehensive english-language report on the abduction of japanese nationals of other countries by north korea. we have provided complimentary copies of the report to all conference participants and other publications are available on the website.
a japanese citizen is have been taken through the airspace making japan and the world painfully aware of the danger posed by north korea, by its missiles from its nuclear weapons and other tools. just like families from 14 other countries, japanese families deserve to know the fate of their abducted relatives many of whom are still alive in north korea today. our organization together with the networks they belong to are fully dedicated to finding out the truth and the fate of the abductees and the swift return of those who are still alive in north korea if it is approached with the game and addressing both serious political concerns
and the human rights issue the human rights organizations will salute this development. it's the political security missile issues and we also see this as an opportunity to continue to elevate. it's to ensure the return of those still in north korea to their loved ones and to bring closure to those whose relatives wouldn't be able to return. thank you very much and we look forward to a great conference
in. >> good morning. i am a state minister of the cabinet office in charge of the abduction issue and i would like to start by thanking the hudson institute especially kenneth weinstein and for cohosting today i would also like to express my gratitude to a ei for servinaei forserving as the mody as well as to scooter libby vice president of the hudson institute and the other speakers as well as all of our guests today. thank you for joining us today. i would like to express my sincere gratitude to you all.
our theme today is the abduction issue in japan as of the 1970s and through the 1980s many were abducted by north korea. in terms of the number of people abducted, the initial count by the japanese government is 17, but there are 800 or more people for whom we cannot rule out the possibility they were abducted by north korea. in 2005 they did come back to japan but since then we've not been able to bring a single person home. of course the victims themselves and also their families that desperately wait for the return has been suffering and grieving for over 40 years and that isn't something i can put into words.
i myself am a member of the caucus. we've been working through a variety of opportunities and shared the desperation of the families and to we have not yet succeeded and nothing campaign me more than that. we've seen this issue impacts the sovereignty and the safety so we want to take every opportunity that we can to bring up with others and present president of trump did bring up the issue of abduction again and i would like to thank him for
having done that. the leaders reaffirmed their commitment working closely in order to resolve the abduction issue and president of trump offered his full cooperation which was very encouraging to us. the japanese government policy is that we need to resolve comprehensively all of the outstanding concerns including objections, the nuclear issue and the missile issues to resolve the issues of the past and only then to normalize relations. i would like to discuss first of all we want you to hear direct testimony so that you may understand their.
we have takuya yokota here from japan today. takuya yokota is the brother. she was abducted from school 42 years ago, and the sun of -- subducted when he was only when there's a either of them have come home as of yet. from the u.s., we have cindy warmbier who is the mother of otto warmbier who died after having been held by north korea for 17 months and released in a coma. we also have with us michael
sneddon is the older brother who was abducted by north korea or china. we also have hwang in-cheol who is the son. his father was abducted. today we are joined by parliamentary representatives from japan who involved in the abduction issue as well as experts on the issue. we are also working with them or is on think tanks and nongovernmental organizations and we hope that in today's seminar that will be an opportunity for us to deepen our cooperation. thank you very much.
yokota abducted in november of 1977 when she was on her way home from school in and was a completely innocent civilian girl. when i think about the suffering that she must have experienced it breaks my heart. according to a former agent of north korea, she was locked in the hall of a ship and was screaming for her mother. she beat the door and scratch the wall so much that her fingernails were torn off and her hands were covered with blood. if she hadn' had been abducted,n she would have lived the life that she had dreamed of. she always loved reading, animals and plants as well as music and art. she had many dreams for her
future i'm sure. she would have gone to high school and university to work to become the person she wanted to be contributing to the world. she would have fallen in love and married and have children and a family, but i that in a se instance, that was robbed by violent abduction by north korea, and she continues to live in unimaginably hard life held by them. it goes without saying that abduction is an egregious human rights abuse. .. they have been the victims of north korea and we believe north korea is committed three crimes, the first of all, violated the
sovereignty and territorial waters of japan to conduct a 13 year old girl, they have also have fabricated to cover up what actually happened to her. and then provided another persons remains claiming they were hers, only exacerbating the grief that her family fell. thirdly, they have used him as a negotiation as cards. and as a result of this my sister many other victims and limiting conditions so cruel in the imagination, the serious human rights abuse is not something to only affect the japanese victims, we have michael and cindy here with us today and there are other countries such as south korea, to have awesome problem victims of north korea. we must remember that.
cindy lost her beloved son auto because of the violence of north korea. it is clear how disgusting the violence north korea engages in and we must not permit these human rights abuse. when i first met cindy in the u.s. she said we must not stay quiet, we must fight this. she cried that give us a great deal of courage in doing so. we share the sadness of the family as well as the sudden family, i received the badge from the family this is otto and i continue to hold onto that as i make my plea. my voice is the voice of my sister, and also the voice of otto. all of us here are suffering
from something that might be happening far away, but it is something that affects us directly and we need to think about what it is that we need to do as a result. the u.s. has had to summit ways for north korea, the first is a part and in singapore kim jong-un looked up that the starry night sky, what did he think then, i don't think that he thought it's a lovely night al, i think that he must've thought why is my country still in the dark. there are 25 million people in north korea whose freedom and human rights have been crushed by violence. and the people there have to think about how to make it through each and every single day. we must remember that. the government of north korea has promised to do nuclear de nr
riswe would beable to ensure the and the kim regime will be able to keep his promise to his people for three generations that it will see. we believe that north korea will be completely unwilling to do nuclear rise and at the moment north korea is suffering economically and politically even if the way to be a third summit between the u.s. and north korea, unless north korea does promise to completely and irreversibly de nuclear i.c.e. there will be no bright future for an upgrade. with north korea it does make concession to the u.s. i believe
it will be japan who will provide economic data to north korea, we need to see oliver abductees return up until now north korea has been tricking us saying they will start investigations et cetera and we will continue to stand up we know that the abductees are under 24 hour watch and north korea knows where they are but north korea has been saying that they are dead and they need to look into what happened to them but we will no longer be fooled by these methods. if we victim family continue to be mocked it's even greater sanctions. i personally could never forgive north korea for having taken my
sister. however, that does not mean that i am engaged in political activities trying to over throw the kim dynasty. all i'm doing is saying that i want the abductees to come home and i hope that kim will make the courageous and right decision. my father is no longer well. he is 86 years old. the older my parents get the greater the risk that they will not be able to see her again. we have no more time, we must join together, pressure north korea and resolve the abduction issues. with one another so we can resolve the nuclear issue as well.
[speaking in foreign language] thank you for joining us today for the seminar. i can from japan, my mother was abducted by north korean agents, 41 years ago when i was one years old. and she has never come home to japan tempts. as a result of that, i have no memory of my mother i don't remember having spoken with her for having touch my mother. when she was 22 years old, she was raising me and my sister who is three years old at the time she was suddenly abducted by north korean agent and she remains held by them. in september 2002, there was a summit between japan and north korea, and north korea acknowledged for the first time that they had objected my mother and said she had died in a car
accident, when i heard that, i thought that i would never be able to meet my mother and got very depressed. i cannot put how i felt at that moment into words but i do remember that i could not stop crying. however, that was not true, the information that she was deceived was spaces. at the time north korea shared a death certificate that was clearly fabricated and even in the report of the traffic, her name did not appear anywhere. there are many contradictions and errors in north korea's description of the victim, that is become apparent to the investigations of the japanese government. they have made up a fictional story to try to cover up the existence of my mother. she is still alive in north korea, and she is still waiting for us to rescue her.
instances of adoption of japanese people, have occurred other than that the my mother. the japanese government recognizes 17 cases, five have come home and the remaining 12 have not. and there are many hundreds of japanese who may have possibly, additionally been affected by north korea. north korea has had that eight of the remaining 12 have not come home have died in that for never came to north korea to begin with. but there are many contradictions in their stories and there's been nothing to back the stories of the deaths of some of them. there was dna testing performed what was said to be the remains. it was found not to be her remains in addition, the objections have not only affected japan from the
testimonies of the japanese victims that to come home, we know there's a possibility that there is also victims from south korea, thailand and romania. in reports, there are also allegations that there abductees from singapore, france, italy, netherlands and china. so this is a human rights issue for all of the international community was. in june, 2018, and every 2019 between the u.s. in north korea. at the summit, president trump directly urged kim jong-un to resolve the objection issue. in september 2002 there was a summit between japan and north korea. we think that this has provided the greatest opportunity for the
head of north korea to rethink the objection issue. we believe that kim jong-un in north korea should make the decision to release all of the abductees together. so that we can break free of the past and move to a brighter future. we have no intention of imposing the normalization of relations with north korea if all of the objective can come home together. it is for our families to come home so they can live normal lives. north korea has threatened peace of the world with its nuclear weapons and missiles. in the u.s. has held a summit to combat this threat and as was seen in the summit in february in hanoi that the u.s. remains
wholeheartedly dedicated to those metrics. north korea continues to only deliver reports that suits it story. and however, japan has a notion of falling for such deploys. it has been 30 or 40 years since north korea began abducting deputies. nothing to be more tragic, we cannot make up for lost time. and their families are getting older, we cannot suspend any more time on this. lastly, i would like to express my gratitude to president trump and to the american averment for bringing up the issue of the objection of the two summits.
i would like to ask you all for your continued help as we wait to be re- noted with their families. thank you very much. [applause] >> good morning. >> good morning. [speaking in foreign language] thank you to the japanese government for inviting me in the institute for the hp nrk for cohosting the seminar on this issue. it breaks my heart for cindy who lost her son.
[inaudible] my sympathy goes to the other family members of the american and japanese abductees. forever separated from their loved ones due to the very ready and north korea. the pain is truly unbearable. these photographs, my father love me. very, very much. in the winter of 1969, i was just two years old. my father met a friend and the friend was hijacked and was from north korea.
in captivity, this is way my father cried all. some even come, under international law, international law, humanitarian principles. send me back on. semi back home to my loving family. despite his own crime, my father was taken away beaten and tortured for two years. my father's was 32 years old and south korea. on december 11, 1969 the plane was hijacked just after takeoff by north korean agent. due to pressure from the international community, the north korea would repatriate all 53 people from the plane. it was february 4, but then on
the 14th, they returned only 39 passengers. testimony of those who return, my father was being detained against their will by the regime. on february 6, 1970, my father strongly argued that he should be sent back home, he says i want to go back to nort korea. ladies and gentlemen, there was 50 years ago. since that day, my mother, sister my grandmother passed her life in agony. before 50 years north korea refuses to sending information.
but my father is on fruit will try to escape from north korea. but his attempt failed. i felt him i cannot help it. help of my father, the rest he was living in the city and north korea, at the time my father was taken away for criminal behavior but now he cannot go home even though he wants to. for the past 18 years i have campaigned for my father's repatriation, truly it is so hard and difficult. the organization's teaching and soul as it helped me consistently since 2016.
it is a compost of 40 volunteers and thanks to their staff and justice i can bring attention to my father's situation in the dream of his repatriation. there is not a single reason why my father should remain forcibly detained in north korea. not just my father, ladies and gentlemen, where are you going to simply watch the barbarian behavior of the north korean government. please take actions. the north korean government hijacked aircraft and refused to abide by the condition of the separation.
i already knew the international community did too. community to demand my father's repatriation, the same goes for all of america who are abductees of north korea. under the rule of international law and the management principles, please demand the reputation so that we can all reunite with their families. ladies and gentlemen, i want to meet my father before he dies. all the kids should be allowed to meet the families before they die. please help us. please help us bring our families home while they are still life. thank you very much. [applause] michael stefan please. >> represent the letter on
behalf of of my parents. >> difference, distinguish government officials and honored guests, it is now 15 years since her brother and son david lewis spotted this appeared in augus august 2004 while hiking to the nonprofits. on that fateful summer day which so much change, david was just 24 years old. little by little, bit by bit, more about david and his situation based upon the information first from the committee for human rights and north korea, located here in washington, created, the national association for the japanese did kidnap it and north korea, and mr. sean young troy located in soul as well as listening to hearts, we are now sure that david is being held by the democratic people's republic
of korea. the dprk. over the years our family has shared our frustrations and hopes with you at similar meetings. marches relentlessly for repairing today's date, as we all know, is friday may 3, 2019. what most here within the solid in my voice, may not know why may the third is significant. today is david's 39th birthday.
is dark now where david is sleeping, my prayer is just as the sun rises each 20 david will soon experience the dawning of his brighter day. a request for david's return faithfully, we saw many organizations who seem to make a difference and most important, we found many wonderful families and the north korean who also suffer from similar feelings. particularly the dakota family. if you are to see my mother and mrs. dakota side-by-side they look so similar, we knew that we talked, the same age, and when
they meant for the first time several years ago my mother knew they shared a similar experience that was a turning point for our family. our hope, daily prayers for all those who have been adductors that they may also soon returned. with this thought, to help bring david home. we also pray, further we think all families affected by those objections for the continued courage and site for the recognition by their government leaders, to call upon responsible government leaders everywhere in the best friends of the korean people, the united states, japan and the people's republic of china to affect change. this is the time in the course of human events when it was morally right. yet in this quest we would be
selfish from most selfish, and, should return of our loved ones be the sole focus of our efforts, the we and the abductees suffer personal -- presently in many years, millions of innocent citizens of the country of north korea continue to suffer under oppression, punishment, abuses, malnutrition, fear and other unspeakable tortures. brought upon them by their government. they've endured this long dark night of pain. even horror for the entire duration of the device. yes, for generations if suffer. should we forget their sufferings, and for the dawning of their break today, therefore for the heartfelt desire of our loved ones but let's not forget the forsaken people of going to
korea to help them find a warm spring morning, filled with hope, opportunity and freedom as our hearts reached out to abductees and the families, we pray for the people of the tpr k. they like us shall one day be free from pain, this is the hope that all will soon be free. we desire all within the sound of her voice to pick up the torch of hope but working relentlessly for brighter day on the korean. respectfully yours, the roy and kathleen sneddon family. [applause] >> cindy. >> i'm going to wait for auto, i do this for auto. and some of you don't care was
going on, and your support keeps refining, by the way where is he. i will tell you a little bit about otto. autumn was in his third year at the university of virginia. he was a great student, a fabulous son, great brother, lots of friends, i raised otto different than i was raised. i had a lot of fear and tentativeness about what i should do, and i wanted otto to be empowered to not be afraid to
grab onto everything that he could in the world with live a really full life. and unfortunately i had no idea, when he took the tour to north korea what he was walking into. north korea to me the cancer on the earth. and if we ignore this cancer, it is not going to go away. it is going to kill all of us. we didn't even know we had this cancer, so that's what i talk. there is a cancer, otto was all about love and goodness.
he never got in a fight with anyone in his whole life and he never got in trouble. he had a job, his dream job on wall street as soon as he graduated, he got that his junior year. he always thought the best in people. if i was ever critical, he will call me on it. he always all the best in people. i know when they took otto, that he thought he'd be released, he thought if i play by the rules, they are going to let me go. i know he was sorry that he ever went into that godforsaken place. had i known north korea wanted money for otto, i would've gladly given them money from day
one, that isn't what they wanted from otto in the beginning, they want everything that they can get from anyone they take. they want everything that they can get from them. they have no respect for human beings he is not making the right decisions, and it's obvious the world that we are on ten. but unless we keep the pressure on north korea, they are not going to change, and i'm very afraid that we're going to let up on the pressure. so i need everyone here to keep the pressure on. on everybody you can. there are still a lot of families here that deserve to see the family members. i'm going to tell you what it was like when i saw when he got
off the plane. i'm sorry, i went on the pain. my gorgeous boy, who every girl had an immediate crush on. looked like a monster. the look in his eyes which i did not know he was blind at the time, was absolute horror. horror like he had seen the devil, and he had. he was with the devil. okay, enough negativity, i had to write down positive things so stay positive. first of all i have so much gratitude to meet all the japanese, family members, who
have so much strength and honor. i am sorry i cannot exhibit the same restraint but another forgive me. then i want to thank the american government. it brought otto home. you can see the japanese were desperately trying to do the same. we have to bring our family members home. we have to come together on this issue. this should not be a partisan issue. this is a problem. this is not only a nuclear problem this is a problem that we are dealing with absolute evil. we can ignore like i would've had this not happened to me.
but i cannot guarantee that something bad is not going to happen if we leave things alone. there is a charade going on right now. it is called diplomacy. how can you have diplomacy with someone who never told the truth. that is what i want to know. i am all for it, but i am very skeptical. he lies, he lies, he lies, offer himself and his regime, all my gosh. if you could call it a regime. they only care about themselves, the only care about themselves, nobody in the concentration camp.
the only difference between hitler and him, but he is doing it to all of his people. into other people too. i will be strong because otto was always proud of me for being strong. he was the strongest kid i know. thank you. [applause] >> before we conclude i should mention my way of housekeeping, there are reverse in the green room want to be interviewing our panelists so may i ask her panelists when they leave to go to the greener for the interviews, ladies and gentlemen, i hope all express
our sympathy for the suffering of these families in our solidarity with their cause. we should also never forget it's not an inexplicable tragedy, the suffering of these families and so many others have inflicted upon the from the logic in the deep dna of the wicked,. [applause] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations]
>> good afternoon, i'm scooter libby for senior vice president at the hudson institute, it's a honor to be here with representatives of the families who are heading and members who are with us in the audience which bears witness to all that we've heard, the second panel will take a look some of the issues in depth with regard to the international community. we meet as we start as a new era in japan, the official translation is beautiful harmony. unofficially, it might be rendered as rule-based order or peace. it struck a note with me because 35 years ago this week, i was part of president reagan's trip to china.
while at hunan university, less than a year after one of these abductions. in his famous speech he spoke of living in harmony with friends. there was no harmony, there is no rule-based order that accepts kidnapping in the continued holding of other countries in i mention it because japan and south korea in america together hope to bring about a prompt resolution to this problem. but others notably china have a role to play in this too. when reagan went to who don't he had a second message for the students in all of asia. he said americans believe and not taking what belongs to others. we believe in the dignity of each man, woman and child and if
each individual special rights to make his own decisions and lead his own life, that is one of democracies greatest strengths in my view that we care about each individual life, it's a strength that we share with japan and north korea, and brings us here today. we must recognize there are other countries that don't share this dedication but the chinese and other states have often spoken of noninterference in their sovereignty. nothing could be more abundant terseness of harmony and fairness in individual dignity or to a and what we are in today. and a instruction at the hands
promptly. the first speaker on the panel, will be the representative, he is focused on the abduction issues, and currently the chairperson of the diet committee for the early rescue of the north korean abductees. translator: good morning. i am from the japanese diet, i am a member of the carcass and i am the head of the caucus for the rescue. of the abductees, our caucus has
over 300 members and is nonpartisan, we collaborate together and every active. in a result of our activities we believe they are aware of the abduction issue. today other than myself who is the chair of the caucus i have with us from the diet who is the deputy chair, and also a member who is a deputy chair. and also the vice chair. and then jean who is a secretary general. first, i would like to say, that these objections represent the ultimate in the human rights abuse in our complaint to
terrorists,, the objective of the seminar today is to make as many americans as possible aware of the abduction issue. and also to resolve the duction issue which means to secure the immediate return of all of these abductees. that will result in north korea regaining its dignity and once again become a member of the international communities, we want to defend the strong message to kim jong-un, i want to stress that it is kim jong-un who is a director of the objections and kim jong-un and was not involved, our prime minister at the time meant with kim jong-un and they signed the
declaration in february, 2000 and according to that, japan and north korea, if we were to normalize relations, then in north korea, it would be a very attractive for economic development in north korea, internment camp should be aware that, the u.s. and japan must cooperate on this issue, currently there is a very strong relationship of trust between president trump and aubrey. we see this is an excellent opportunity for some president trump brought up the abduction issue and we have now moved as of this month into the air and
japan. between the u.s. and japan in april trump and aubrey talked in depth about the abductions and president trump this month will be the first to japan in the era. in the two leaders will be meeting in june at the g i believe that will curve as a based on the report, what that means, is that the domestic environment and north korea must be severe at the moment. i heard this from someone who visited in north korea recently but apparently, there is not
even enough bread app on young's hud luxury hotel for foreigners. what it means and north korea, is being so critical at the moment is that i want to aid from japan. meaning he plans on making small concession in order to get as much as they can. that is a methodology is clear both in the context of the nuclear in the missile issues. and the discussions at the u.s., as well. there is already been resolution of the past in both the u.s. and house and senate regarding the potential objection of david which you heard about from his brother michael earlier. our caucus in japan also
proactively worked for the passage of those resolutions. we believe that justice with the nuclear missile issues that japan and the u.s. can also collaborate on the abduction issue. because that will serve as a major pressure on kim jong-un. we must leave no stone unturned and trying to resolve the issue of the abduction of the japanese people. however, we must as a primer minister has said, we deal directly with the leader of north korea and we hope to cooperate with the u.s. so that we can have a summit between japan and north korea so we can resolve the abduction issue and
our caucus plans on using the disposal to make that happen. with that i would like to conclude my comments. thank you very much. >> thank you all. senior democratic stoffer at the foreign relations committee, of defense precision, a position close to my heart. >> thank you very much. it is nice to hear the committee referred to as procedures delete these. if i asked, from my friends in the press as a staff member if you can share my remarks on background as i would like to continue to be a staff member. and i also want to pass on regards from senator menendez from new jersey who is a ranking
member on the committee, he wishes he could been here this morning but no he is certainly thinking about all of your families and about the fate of the objectives in north korea. briefly, i don't think this is a not just for the suffering of the people and north korea but also for the fate of the japanese abductees, and americans who have been unjustly imprisoned and worse by the regime of kim jong-un, it's fair to say that members of congress if we cannot characterize that as evil, and the word evil has no meaning anymore. so that is a commitment that you can expect to see continue it is been one that we have demonstrated and exhibited
across congress is controlled by democrats and republicans and with ministration, with democrats and republicans for the white house. we view as our will to keep the ministration, to make sure these issues are receiving the attention that they deserve. as mentioned, we passed resolutions for david, repressed revolutionresolutions for otto,y hard-working situations. and i have nothing but admiration for you and your family. words fail me. we have made increasingly so in the past several years to include human rights issues and the sanctions legislation that congress has passed.
and to include statutory requirements starting with the north korean sanctions, enhancement act in 2016, that will not allow the u.s. or international sanctions to be rolled back completely unless there is concrete action by north korea. to address human rights issues including the fate of abductees. i think that is a commitment that you can expect to see congress continue to hold to. one can imagine, any number of past for diplomacy with north korea, but for me, and for my boss and i dare say, on this issue i feel safe in speaking for members on both sides of my committee. it is impossible to imagine a solution for the north korea challenge that does not include
resolution of human rights, justice for americans who have been victims of this regime. my japanese friends, let me finish it by noting we take our alliance and partnership with japan with the utmost seriousness. in every discussion that we have with the ministration, members, both sides of the aisle, house and senate, make sure to emphasize how important it is that in any engagement with north korea the japanese equities including the state of the abductees, are taken into account. that is something we will continue to keep where i am. and something we will continue to pay attention to. thank you. [applause] >> our next speaker, senior legislative assistant for christer, who is a member of the
permanent committee on intelligence in the house, and a specialist on foreign affairs. >> i feel like -- thank you for those comments and also thank you for your bravery. as we hear family members to be here and share stories, we greatly appreciate that. as my remarks will predominantly focus on david, what an interesting way to celebrate a birthday, but grateful to be here to not forget him and not forget his memory that exist here today and not just for him but all of those who have been affected by this regime. thank you. and happy birthday david. i want to give a little background he wishes he could be here but it did not work with the schedule. he first became very familiar with david's case when he
entered office due to personal connection through his own son. the congressman son was a friend of david and they interacted due to missionary service, so david had served in south korea and then was in the capacity of teaching language skills to those that would continue with missionary service in south korea and it happened that the congressman son was one who is going to be serving in south korea and interacted with david in the missionary training center where he was learning language and skills to be able to interact with the culture and survive an international experience for someone who has never had that expense. and adept at cultures. so that is the first connection with the congressman and when he became engaged aside from his responsibility of the members of congress to be engaged in the issues and then the foreign invaders, which led to the
passage of a that was age rest 891 of david's kne. this is when noted, it's affecting many countries, many, many countries have been affected in these situations. so the main three pillars the lack was a state department needs to investigate and consider all possibilities of explanation for david's disappearance, second would be that they coordinate their efforts to the government of japan, south korea, and china. and lastly, they keep congress in the family and those efforts. through this experience with this resolution congressman was
able to interact with various individuals at the state department, he will tell you his impressed and grateful for the work in which they did especially in the beginning phases of david's disappearance. the efforts in the pressure that was put on the chinese government to investigate but unfortunately due to turnover of staff and the reality of time, the congressman felt it had definitely felt the reader in terms of looking into other options and not just accepting the status quo. to fruition. he considers to share this concern along with all the other abductees and puts pressure with possible. . . .
hopeful that this is an issue that is brought up. president trump has brought it up and we continue to press others. he happens to be a good friend of secretary pompeo and we continue to bring up the importance of this. i think it's important that it's not forgotten and that's why we are here today to commemorate that. i can continue on some of the perspectives congressman stewart is engaged on. no need to continue and repeat but know that again we appreciate the collaboration with the japanese government. we appreciate the collaboration with all of those that have been affected by the situation and the importance of continuing the collaboration as we move forwa forward.
[applause] the next speaker is tom rose, a friend and a man that i admire greatly. he's a top adviser to vice president mike pence who has been a leading voice on the policies for this administration. in the two years of the administration i've been present when he's given stunning remarks in tokyo about american foreign policy. he's also a hero to many over the course of his career on human rights issues. let me turn on the clock so i don't get to six minutes. thank you very much everyone here. listening to the stories of the abductees and of course in the end thread, one can't help but think that this world can be a
rotten place with rotten people and rotten regime's, but in listening to the passion and commitment and the continued resolve of those citizens whose abductees have been gone, whose loved ones have been murdered is a reminder, a powerful one of the beauty in this world, the power of freedom, and the sanctity and in viability of every single human life. nothing about north korea should be forgotten especially in light of the negotiations and diplomacy this administration is attempting to conduct a. since its founding the totalitarian leadership of the
dpr k. has exacted unparalleled privatization, torture, forced mass starvation, execution, murder, forced abortion and a systemic system of slave labor and innovative productions of totalitarian control that have been best highlighted have been the means by which this regime has maintained and consolidated its hold on power. cindy said diplomacy is a charade. if human rights and part of thet diplomacy, cindy is absolutely right because no peace can never come with the regime who treats
its citizens in a manner that is simply beyond comprehension of anyone living in the west. public executions, massive forced starvation the president has been emphatic and direct on the two occasions when they met. i would simply ask of the abductees and cindy and fred something very direct and that is to never, ever let us forget your stories, to always stay in the spotlight, never refrained from going on television or addressing conferences like this, to never refrained from voicing criticisms or objections
when they feel merited. listening to these stories today, the japanese abductees and of course fred and cindy i was reminded of something that i heard a while ago about the difference between the words history and memory, history and english into words, his story. memory begins with two letters, me, myself. i would simply ask of all of the abductees families and all those who suffered at the hands of this brutal regime better to let your stories become history to but always insist that they remain our memory imprinted on our hearts and in our minds so that their story can become and remain our own. there will never be peace until
these issues are resolved. president trump is committed to that, vice president mike pence is committed to that and i know all of you are. second, never let us off the hook. keep the pressure on them and not jus, not justthe north korep the pressure on the congress, on the administration, and all of us to ensure we stay on the right path. thank you very much. [applause] our final speaker for questions is melanie kirkpatrick a colleague and friend, longtime observer of the situation in north korea, author of in outstanding both related to the subject, and author of many columns in "the wall street journal." >> thank you, scooter and good morning to all of you ladies and gentlemen. i would like to talk a little
bit about the citizens of countries, all countries have been kidnapped by north korea. let me give you a list of the names of the countries. they are south korea, china, france, guinea, italy, japan, jordan, lebanon, the netherlands, asia, singapore and thailand. to that list i would add that the united states because i believe david was probably kidnapped by north korean agents in 2004. the tragic stories we heard earlier today represent only a few of the victims. there are many more, several hundred japanese were probably abducted. the number of south koreans who were taken, fishermen, soldiers, students, ordinary people runs
into the thousands. lebanese victims who managed to go home reported seeing french, dutch and italian women at a north korean spy institute. who are they? no one knows. are they still in north korea? north korea won't say. most of the kidnappings that have been documented to place during the 70s and 80s. do not however make the mistake of thinking that north korea's history of kidnapping people in foreign countries is a relic of the past. now as then, north korea has no respect for the sovereignty of other countries read the rule of law or for the sanctity of human life. in recent years the kidnappers turned their attention to china where they've kidnapped chinese and south korean citizens and have taken them to north korea.
these people were targeted because of their work helping the north korean escapees who were hiding in china. a chicago area pastor was kidnapped and taken to north korea where he died. this pastor. south korean citizenship but with a green card holder in the united states. since taking power at the end of 2011, the focus of north korea's kidnapping operations has been on its own citizens who are living abroad. in 2014, north korean agents abducted a student from a university he was attending in paris. the young man was the son of a north korean official who had just been purged and executed. the student escaped as he fled from his captors and at the charles de gaulle airport and he remains in hiding. a similar episode took place in
france in 2013 when a student banished from another university. a week later he reappeared on campus guarded by police. the full story hasn't come out, but we know french authorities made the decision to protect the students because they believe hd he was in danger of being kidnapped by north korea. who was he? this is where the story gets really interesting. he is the son of kim jong's half-brother. the man whose murder order dot the airport in 2017. after his father's death, he disappeared again and reportedly is hiding in a western country. kim jong moon, who has no son may consider the young man a threat to his continued rule. he ihe's western educated and ss fluent english. he's called his uncle a dictator
and expressed sympathy for the plight of the people of north korea, a threat indeed. one final example of recent kidnappings last fall for korea's ambassador to italy they left behind in a row and their r teenage daughter who reportedly is disabled. four days later, the daughter disappeared. she eventually turned up in pyongyang and is believed to have been kidnapped from italy by north korean agents whose seizure has been interpreted as a warning to her parents not to go public with the story. early in his presidency, president trump spoke about north korea's record on human rights and he invited the escapees to the state of the union address. he and mrs. trump met in tokyo
with the 13-year-old whose tragic story we heard this morning from her brother. recently however, president trump has been quiet on the subject of human rights. in my view, human rights, including the abduction issue deserve a place on the agenda during the negotiations. i hope the moment will come soon that the united states thinks the time is right to discuss this issue fully and try to make progress on this issue. as for north korea, they've given no indication that he's interested in considering a proposal to help develop its economy and return for denuclearization. perhaps he understands that developing north korea's economy would create a far more open society than exists today.
the development that could threaten his continued rule. if, however, he reaches the point where solutions to signal the world that he is willing to change and is serious about it, there is a way to get our attention, identify and free every one of these abductees. thank you. [applause] thank you all. i want to first thank the panel, but the minister and president trump for their leadership on these issues and welcome back to help on the q-and-a period that follows. thank you to the panel very much. [applause]
ladies and gentlemen, we appreciate the panel and with the speakers had to say. we are running towards the end of our time, and this is the place where we can have some questions and interventions from the floor. i'd like to join the association for the rescue of japanese kidnapped by north korea to offer our group a few words. nice to see you again. >> thank you. listening to today's discussion,
i thought back to the issue dealing with the kidnapping as an issue that requires us to fight against lies and the fact that there've been kidnappings around the world were discussed today. the lies told ther lie is told o different stages. first is they say they don't kidnap anyone even though they are they lie and say they aren't. in japan we have one in the battle against their lives. they said they never kidnapped japanese people but we forced them to admit that they did. it hasn't been shown to be lies. we were able to force them to admit that they had kidnapped japanese people but after that they said that they wanted and
with a template together to show that the japanese people have died. there is no evidence that that is the case in other words they are lying saying that they are still in north korea have died so my question is i would like to ask the panel i understand that they will be meeting soon with the north korean leader and we hope that he will be able to get them to admit that the eight people in north korea are still alive in other words they've been lying saying that they died. i want him to say that.
what should he say in response i would like to ask any kind of advice you might have for a prime minister should save that discussion occurs. >> are there questions or comments from others on the floor? yes please come in the back. >> i spent a bit of time in south korea and i'm kind of amazed what they've done up the human rights. as we know he hasn't mentioned it as far as i know to ask about the case in the summit in hanoi. what can be done to get the president trump to move on this issue.
is it worth disrupting the whole process in the attempted reconciliation as i say i'm stunned by some of the comments i've heard my impression is he's done nothing so i wondered if you can comment on this. if they can identify yourself. i don't believe in giving security guarantees to people who abduct. that is wrong to be and get the business guarantee keeps coming up over and over again. how do we get that off the table?
doesn't care about human rights the vice president met with north korean defectors on mond monday. i think it is inaccurate and unfair but as i said in my remarks i was very earnestly to never stop commenting and criticizing when they believe it is necessary to never hold back their voices. the pressure needs to stay on us and our administration to ensure that we can proceed with
negotiations on a critical national security issue. it's not an aesthetic exercises is quite real and existential to us and it does require some delicacy. they have the right and the duty to insist it be heard at all times when they want them to be heard. it is a separate and coequal the congressional voices or the importance of human rights and the importance of achieving justice for american citizens and others who have been
when it comes to north korea and various legislation that would show that and we all know that the question of north korea take in immensely complicated matters and it's more than one or two or three countries when we look at who would be ultimately affected by some of these discussions, so it is a very delicate matter. that's stated of course you human rights must be a large portion of that i will refrain from commenting considering that i work for a congressman and i shouldn't speak on behalf of him as much as to share that they've put their foot down as far as
the human rights is concerned, i feel the united states and japan are important and that relation is important as far as human rights is concerned. they have a very deep relationship based on trust and a very good relationship i thi think. the abduction issue is the ultimate in t and the president himself has brought up the issue very clearly with chairman kim and this is a wonderful thing i
think, so i would like to repeat that as far as the domestic issue is concerned the prime minister has quite a lot of experience and has been put over a hundred and had a good experience and good knowledge of how to deal with the foreign affairs area. to overcome the issues of mistrust i think this is something that is very important
and wonderful and the minister was used to test experience to bring about a good result for what happened. i wouldn't dare to offer advice to the prime minister but i would make a couple of points i could. he's passionate about this issue you will notice a little blue pin on his lapel is never without this and wears it every day to remind him that he must identify and bring home the japanese abductees. i admire that passion and conviction but i would say i'm
skeptical that it would be successful. in the past we know that north korea has lied and sent it back and correct faults remain. i would say to you they need to be prepared for failure. the concluding words of comments first of all many thanks to our friend a hug them and the government of japan for organizing this important gathering and thank you all for joining.
that use of the mechanism of depression take a look at the report and read the chapters on the use of these in the north korean system. third, it is heartening to have our japanese friend here and our american friends but as we know many of the victims were south korean victims and possibly most of the victims or south korean victims. we await the voice on this
issue. since the current administration in south korea has self-described human activists we hope that this would find a place finally let me remind some of you that here in the washington, d.c. this week is designated as north korea freedom week to see how much work we have cut out for us. thank you all for coming