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2016年7月 5日 (火)

Bodies of Dhaka terrorist attack victims arrive in Japan

July 5, 2016 (Mainichi Japan)
Bodies of Dhaka terrorist attack victims arrive in Japan

TOKYO (Kyodo) -- A government plane carrying the bodies of seven Japanese victims of the terror attack in Bangladesh returned to Japan on Tuesday morning, with the victims' relatives also aboard the aircraft.

The Air Self-Defense Force jet landed at Tokyo's Haneda airport shortly before 6 a.m., after leaving Bangladesh's capital Dhaka on Monday evening.

Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida and Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Koichi Hagiuda laid flowers and held a moment of silence in front of the caskets unloaded onto the tarmac.

"It is extremely regrettable that precious lives were lost in a savage and heinous terrorist attack," Kishida told reporters afterward. "I felt deep sorrow and strong indignation."

The victims were Makoto Okamura, 32, Yuko Sakai, 42, and Rui Shimodaira, 27, all of whom worked for Tokyo-based construction consulting company Almec Corp.; Hideki Hashimoto, 65, Nobuhiro Kurosaki, 48, and Hiroshi Tanaka, 80, who worked for Tokyo-based consulting firm Oriental Consultants Global Co.; and Koyo Ogasawara, 56, an employee of Katahira & Engineers International.

Tamaoki Watanabe, who was among the 13 people rescued when police stormed the restaurant, is recovering from a gunshot wound. The sole Japanese survivor of the attack, who is in his 40s, returned to Tokyo on a small jet early Tuesday morning.

Police are planning to conduct postmortems on the victims to ascertain the precise cause of death as they launch a murder investigation.

The government will hold a meeting of Cabinet ministers in the morning to discuss the case.

Twenty hostages including nine Italians and one person each from the United States and India as well as the seven Japanese were killed after heavily armed Islamist militants attacked a restaurant frequented by expatriates in Dhaka on Friday evening.

Six attackers were shot dead and one captured when police stormed the restaurant on Saturday. Two police officers were also killed, while 13 hostages were rescued.

The relatives of the Japanese victims and survivor left for Dhaka on the government plane on Saturday evening.

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