Japan minister urges North Korea to announce result of abductions probe quickly and honestly

A Japanese Cabinet minister has urged North Korea to quickly release the results of a new investigation into the fate of dozens, possibly hundreds, of Japanese believed to have been abducted by the North's agents in the 1970s and '80s.

Minister in charge of abductions Eriko Yamatani told reporters Wednesday she finds it regrettable that North Korea hasn't informed Japan of the timing or other details of its expected announcement.

North Korea agreed in May to conduct a new probe into the abductions.

In 2002, it acknowledged that its agents had kidnapped 13 Japanese, mainly to train spies in Japanese language and culture. It allowed five of them to return to Japan that year, but said the others had died. Japan believes more people may have been abducted.