Fusako Shigenobu, leader of the infamous Red Army, became free on Saturday after spending 20 years in prison. The militant organization stood responsible for several terrorist attacks throughout the world back in the ’70s and ’80s.
Shigenobu (now 76-year-old) went to jail after coordinating the 1974 capture of the French Embassy at The Hague, Netherlands, by the revolutionary leftist group she established three years before in Lebanon.
In the attack, Japanese Red Army members took the French ambassador and other officials hostage, to trade the release of one participant of the organization that had been detained in France.
Shigenobou took a car from the medical prison in the capital in the morning. After she got out of the vehicle, her well-wishers ran to her and came to embrace her.
Shigenobou Founded Japanese Red Army In 1971
“I apologize for harming people that I didn’t know. In the future, I’d prefer to focus on my therapy and learning,” Shigenobu, who is receiving treatment for cancer, said to reporters at the park nearby.
In a statement issued earlier on, she acknowledged that she made “mistakes”. However, she added, “I am grateful to have lived according to wishes of changing the world to make a difference.”
“If you ask me to do so as one of the witnesses to the events, I will fulfill my part in delivering reflections and summaries,” she wrote.
Shigenobu Shigenobu left fled to Middle East in 1971, and avoided arrest until the Osaka Prefecture detained her in 2000.
She had already disbanded the Militant Group Red Army from prison in 2001. The group aimed to create a world to revolutionize socialism by committing various high-profile terrorist attacks.
It was the cause of an attack in 1972 at Lod airport also known as Ben Gurion, in Tel Aviv, in which 20 people died, and over 70 were injured.
Their terrorist activities also include the occupancy of embassies of Sweden and America in 1975 AD. They were demanding the release of their detained companion in Japan. Not only that, the group again took over an airplane of Japan Airlines near India.
Similarly, their deeds also include the bombing of a U.S. army club vehicle in Italy, ending five individuals’ lives.
Shigenobu’s daughter Mei told Kyodo News that her mother has stopped being concerned about violence, but she wants to share her thoughts with the world through social media.
Shigenobu will continue writing about the suffering of Palestinians amid Israeli occupation. Mei explained both of them intend to live in Japan for a time.
Many Red Army members are behind bars currently however, seven more members are still on the run. Police have come up with an approximate photos of how they would look now and made those public.