N. Korean boat found in distress in Japanese waters - coastguard

Japan’s coastguard boarded a North Korean fishing boat near a Japanese island, where the crew said they had taken shelter from rough seas on Thursday. It is the latest in a series of North Korean vessels drifting into Japanese waters. The wooden boat was towed nearer to the northern island of Hokkaido for inspection, Reuters said. Authorities had yet to decide what to do with the vessel and the 10 fishermen on board. Analysts say food shortages may be driving fishermen to risk taking their small boats to more dangerous waters closer to Japan. The encounters have attracted greater attention amid tension in the region over North Korea’s weapons program and its latest missile test on Wednesday.