The "Asian" body found in Iraq and that was declared to be "almost positively" the hostage Shosei Koda (as I reported here
and others reported here
), now has been declared "nearly certain" not that of Shosei Koda.
The U.S. military airlifted the remains of the body found in Balad to Kuwait on Saturday, where it was examined by a doctor at the Japanese Embassy.
Chief Cabinet Secretary Hiroyuki Hosoda said Saturday, "It was nearly certain that the body is not the one of Mr. Koda."
Hosoda said a closer examination of the body's dental work and state of decomposition determined it was likely not the Japanese hostage.
Earlier, Japanese officials -- citing information from the U.S. military -- said the body found in Balad matched the description of Koda.
"We'd sent to the U.S. authorities his weight and height and the detail that he had a small bald spot on his head," Japan's Senior Vice Foreign Minister Shuzen Tanigawa said. "And we believe these are the details that matched the [body parts] found."
Tipped by: The Command Post
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Update ( 5:13PM PST )
It is now being reported that it was the wrong body inspected. Wow. The emotions of the family of this man must be incredibly destroyed.
A body inspected Saturday to determined whether it is that of the Japanese hostage was not the one found early, a senior Japanese official said.
"Its features are entirely different" from the one described by the US military, Kyodo News quoted Senior Vice Foreign Minister Shuzen Tanigawa as saying in Amman, Jordan where he is in charge of handling the crisis.
Earlier, Chief Cabinet Secretary Hiroyuki Hosoda said the body had been confirmed not to be that of the Japanese hostage Shosei Koda, citing some discrepancies in physical features.
Nov. 2 - Japanese Hostage Shosei Koda Beheaded [ Video ]
Oct. 30 - Body Found In Iraq Now Confirmed To Be Japanese Hostage Shosei Koda
Oct. 29 - Shosei Koda, Japanese Hostage, Found Dead
Oct. 27 - Shosei Koda, Japanese Hostage Held By Zarqawi, Video Released