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Japan law bars North Korean ships as abduction dispute continues

[JURIST] New Japanese compulsory insurance rules [Japanese Transport Ministry backgrounder] requiring all foreign ships over 100 tons entering Japanese ports to be insured against oil spills, losses and other damages went into effect Tuesday, effectively barring most North Korean ships. The requirements are seen as a disguised move against direct trade with North Korea; Japan has been considering sanctions [JURIST report] against Pyongyang over a long-running dispute about North Korea's abductions of Japanese citizens in the 1970s and '80s. Japanese officials have acknowledged that the rules were drawn up with its neighbor in mind. The Japan Times has local coverage.

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