Decapitated Body is Shosei Koda
Sunday, October 31, 2004 Posted: 10:15 PM JST
The Japanese government confirmed today that a decapitated body found in Baghdad is that of Shosei Koda. Koda had been kidnapped by militants in Iraq. Tuesday they threatened to kill Koda if Japan did not withdraw its troops from Iraq withing 48 hours. Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi called the killing ''barbarous and vicious'', but added that Japanese troops will not leave Iraq.
An Iraqi police officer found Koda's body and severed head in a section of Baghdad that has seen many bloody clashes between Iraqi militants and U.S. forces. Foreign Minister Nobutaka Machimura said at a news conference this morning that Koda's body was identified through fingerprint matching and comparison of physical characteristics.
Koda is the fifth Japanese casualty in Iraq. Two diplomats were killed in November last year, and two journalists in May.
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