Relatives of Japanese nationals abducted by North Korea decades ago have renewed their appeal for the government to act for an early return of the abductees.The group of abductees' relatives held a news conference in Tokyo on Thursday, 2 days before the 20th anniversary of the group's establishment.Group leader Shigeo Iizuka said parents and siblings of abductees formed the group to get back their loved ones, but that the abductees have yet to return after 20 years.He said group members want the government to put top priority on the abduction issue. Iizuka's sister, Yaeko Taguchi, was abducted and taken to North Korea in 1978 when she was 22.Sakie Yokota told the news conference that she believes her abducted daughter Megumi is crying out in her mind, asking her for help to return home to her father and brothers.Megumi Yokota was abducted in 1977 when she was 13. The mother asked people to save her daughter's life, urging them to imagine how the girl of 13 has been groaning until her current age of 52.Teruaki Masumoto's sister, Rumiko, was abducted in 1978 when she was 24. He said in tears that he feels sorry for his sister as he has failed to get her back after 20 years have passed.Japan's government officially recognizes that at least 17 Japanese nationals were abducted and taken to North Korea in the 1970s and 1980s. Five of the abductees returned in October 2002, and the other 12 remain unaccounted for.
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