North Korean ‘ghost ships’ are washing up on the shores of Japan. Why? - The Washington Post
TOKYO — Three more empty boats were found along Japan’s west coast on Thursday, a day when the snow and the rain made sure the temperature never really rose above freezing. Two bodies reduced to skeletons were found near one, which was upturned on the shore near the city of Oga.
Another boat, much bigger, was found not far away. And the third, bearing Korean writing, was caught in fishing nets near Sado Island, just off the west coast.
The previous day, an equally freezing Wednesday, a rickety old wooden boat that also bore a sign in Korean was found bucking around in the rough seas. Discovered nearby: two bodies.
Another body, mostly just bones, was found up the coast in Akita prefecture Tuesday. Before that, three bodies were recovered near a wooden boat — two of them wearing pins showing the face of Kim Il Sung, the “eternal president” of North Korea.
Almost every day for the past month, grisly discoveries like these have been made all along Japan’s western coastline, across the sea from North Korea. One boat even had a slogan in Korean declaring: “September is a boat accident prevention month.”