Beijing informs Tokyo of plan to execute 3 more Japanese

Last Updated: Friday, April 2, 2010 - 18:46

Tokyo: China informed Japan that it plans
to execute three more Japanese men convicted in drug smuggling
cases, Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada said on Friday.

Okada summoned Chinese Ambassador to Japan Cheng Yonghua
to the ministry and conveyed Tokyo`s concern over the planned
executions of the three men, identified as Teruo Takeda,
Hironori Ukai and Katsuo Mori, as well as Mitsunobu Akano, who
China said earlier this week would be executed soon.

Okada said at a regular press conference shortly before
meeting with Cheng that he would tell the ambassador "there
are concerns among the public on whether proper procedures
have been taken" regarding the death penalties given to the
men.

"Executing four people in a row may affect public
opinion," he also said.

Cheng did not to respond to media questions after meeting
with Okada.

The death sentence on Akano, who China said would be
executed as early as next Monday, was finalized in 2009. The
sentences on the three other men, who China said would be
executed next Thursday, were finalized in 2007.

Akano was convicted of attempting to smuggle stimulant
drugs totaling about 2.5 kilograms from China to Japan in
2006.

If he is executed, it will be the first execution by
China of a Japanese national since the two countries
normalized diplomatic relations in 1972.

PTI



First Published: Friday, April 2, 2010 - 18:46

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