News media in Japan have reported that
Mr. Takayuki Noguchi, a Japanese citizen, was arrested in
China for helping two Japan-born North Korean refugees.
They tell how he was released in August after serving 8
months. However, I was shocked to learn that Mr. Choi Yong-hun,
a South Korean aid worker imprisoned on a similar charge,
was sentenced to 5 years. Many of us worry because his health
is reportedly worsening after 22 months in jail. I hope
the Chinese government will respond to international humanitarian
calls for his immediate release together with Mr. Park Yong-chol,
the North Korean refugee imprisoned with him.