Hitomi Soga

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Hitomi Soga-Jenkins (Japanese: 曽我ひとみ Soga Hitomi, born May 17, 1959) is a Japanese woman who was abducted to North Korea together with her mother, Miyoshi Soga, from Sado Island, Japan, in 1978. She was "given" to and later married Charles Robert Jenkins, an American defector to North Korea, in 1980. Soga currently lives in Japan.

Abduction and life in North Korea[edit]

Soga, a nurse, was abducted from her hometown of Mano-cho, now part of the city of Sado, Niigata, on August 12, 1978, and taken to North Korea to train agents in Japanese customs and language. Her then 46-year-old mother, Miyoshi, disappeared at the same time and has not been heard from since. The North Koreans gave Soga the Korean name Min Hye-gyong (Korean: 민혜경). She met Jenkins in early July 1980, when he was asked to teach her English, and they married on August 8, 1980. They had two daughters, Mika and Brinda.[citation needed]


Soga was one of a group of five Japanese abductees whom North Korea allowed to visit their homeland in September 2002. Though the trip was intended to be brief, she, like her four companions, never returned to North Korea. She and many Japanese called on North Korea to release family members who had been left behind. Soga was later reunited with her husband and two daughters in Jakarta, Indonesia, on July 9, 2004. The family came to Japan on July 18, 2004.[citation needed]

Jenkins was court-martialed and incarcerated for desertion at a U.S. military installation in Japan for 26 days then released. They live on Sado Island in Soga's hometown where, according to media reports, the family has settled.[citation needed]

In October 2012, she pleaded with the North Korean government for the release of her mother and other abductees.[1][2]


Soga was played by Horikoshi Nori in Saikai ~Yokota Megumi-san no Negai~

See also[edit]


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