Families Call for Repatriation of 11 Abductees

November 5, 2012: Families of 11 South Korean citizens abducted by North Korea in 1969 plan to visit the North’s representatives to the United Nations in Switzerland to raise pressure on the country to repatriate the abductees, a representative for the families said Monday. The 11 were aboard a Korean Air service hijacked by the North.

The group representative said family members will fly to Geneva on Monday for a seven-day trip aimed at pressing the North to repatriate the 11, including the delivery of a letter to the North’s representatives calling for the repatriation. …

In response to the South Korean government’s call to verify the survival of the 11 abductees in 2006, the North said that was impossible. Continue reading at Yonhap News Agency.

YS-11 Group Files Suit in Seoul

February 15, 2012: Hwang In-cheol, the head of an advocacy group for the victims of the 1969 hijacking of Korean Air Flight YS-11, has filed a lawsuit against one of the alleged abductors, Cho Chang-hee, with the South Korean prosecutor’s office.

In a telephone conversation with Daily NK yesterday, Hwang explained his motivations, saying, “It has been 42 years to the day since 39 of the 50 kidnapping victims were returned to South Korea. I have filed a lawsuit against the abductor in the hope that it will encourage the government to expend further efforts to confirm how many of the remaining 11 are still alive, and have them returned.” Continue reading at Daily NK.

Families Charge Spy in 1969 Hijacking

February 15, 2012: Families whose parents or relatives were abducted by a North Korean spy 42 years ago submitted an official complaint to the Seoul Central Prosecutors’ Office yesterday.

On Dec. 11, 1969, 50 South Korean passengers and crew members were abducted while taking a Korean Air YS-11 domestic flight departing from Gangneung to Gimpo. The spy, named Cho Chang-hee, hijacked the airplane and forced the captain to fly to Pyongyang.  …

“Four families of the abductees charged the spy, Cho Chang-hee, although we can’t confirm if he’s still alive or not,” Hwang Il-cheol, whose father was one of the 11 unreturned people, told the Korea JoongAng Daily yesterday. “We charge Cho as the culprit for this unending case.” Continue reading at the Korean JoongAng Daily.

S. Korean Files Suit Against Alleged NK Spy Over Abducted Father

February 14, 2012: Hwang In-cheol was only 26 months old when his father got on a plane for a business trip to Seoul on Dec. 11, 1969.

The son hasn’t seen his father since his plane was hijacked by a North Korean spy soon after takeoff from Gangneung, a South Korean eastern city near the border with North Korea. The YS-11 with the hijacker and 46 other South Korean passengers plus four crew members landed in North Korea.

After diplomatic efforts, the North allowed 39 passengers to return home through the heavily fortified border between the two Koreas on Feb. 14, 1970. However, the North held Hwang’s father, radio producer Hwang Won, six other passengers and four crew members. Continue reading at The Korea Times.

Son Longs for Father Hijacked to the North in 1969

September 28, 2014: On Dec. 11, 1969, a Korean Air Lines YS-11 aircraft flying from Gangneung, Gangwon, to Gimpo International Airport was hijacked by a North Korean spy at 12:36 p.m. and forced to fly to Pyongyang. The flight was carrying 46 South Korean passengers and four crew members, including Hwang Won, a 32-year-old producer for Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation, who was on a business trip.


Hwang left behind his wife, a three-month-old daughter and a two-year-old son. They haven’t seen or heard from him since. After 42 years, most Koreans have forgotten the hijacking and many young people have never heard about it at all. But Hwang’s son, Hwang In-cheol, 44, has never given up his search for the father he can’t even remember.

And he’s bitter about the scant assistance he’s received through the decades. Continue reading at Korea JoongAng Daily.

Families of NK Abductees Call for Help

September 20, 2011: For most, the 1969 hijacking of a South Korean airliner by an armed North Korean agent has faded into history. But for Hwang In-chul, whose father was a passenger, the incident still takes a heavy toll.

KT 2011

Thirty-nine of the passengers on the KAL YS-11 were eventually repatriated through Red Cross channels, with Pyongyang claiming the pilots themselves had redirected the flight. But seven others along with four crew members were abducted and never returned. Continue reading at The Korea Times


Time to Step Up in Kidnapping Cases

September 19, 2011: “In 1969, when I was 2 years old, my father on KAL flight YS-11 bound for Gimpo Airport was kidnapped and taken to North Korea. This led to my mother developing Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome and Paranoid Personality Disorder, after which my mother and I became known as ‘the crazy lady and her son’.”

The president of Association for Family Members of the KAL Kidnapping Victims, Hwang In Cheol told the story of the painful childhood he experienced at a forum hosted today by Citizens’ Alliance for North Korean Human Rights entitled ‘Trends and Strategies to Internationalize the Issue of Civilian Kidnappings’….

Professor Park stated, “We need to shake off this passive mentality in which we include kidnapping victims within the scope of separated families, and (merely) promote the inclusion of these people in organized family reunions where all they can do is check that their family members are still alive.” Continue reading at Daily NK.

NK Spurns Letter by South Korean Wanting Father’s Return

March 30, 2011: North Korea refused Wednesday to accept a letter by a South Korean man demanding the return of his father who was aboard an airplane hijacked by the communist state in 1969, an official said.

Earlier this month, Hwang In-cheol, a 44-year-old local publisher, wrote a letter to the North Korean regime and asked the South Korean Unification Ministry to deliver it for him. Continue reading at The Korea Times.


Hwang In-cheol Presents Petition to UNHRC Working Group

July 5, 2010: Hwang In-cheol, a representative of the Families of KAL Passengers Abducted to North Korea, presented a petition to the UN on June 17 in order to find out whether his father Won Hwang detained in North Korea was still alive and could be repatriated. …

In 2001, Seong Kyeong-hee, one of the flight attendants, attended the second reunion of separated families during the Korean War. She told her mom that Yu Byeong-ha and Choi Seok-man were still alive. In addition, Seong told her family that she and Jeong Kyeong-suk, who was also a flight attendant, were living in the same town.

Nevertheless, the North Korean government claimed a few days later that Jeong’s fate was unknown. Thus, except for these three people, Seong, Yu, and Choi, it is not known whether the other abducted South Koreans are still alive. Continue reading at Open Radio for North Korea.