Officials in Japan questioning man who claims to be 'North Korean defector'

The man told police he was forced to leave his country after being caught watching videos from South Korea

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Image: Andy Wong / AP/Press Association Images

Officials in Japan are questioning a man who claims he is a defector from North Korea.

The man is said to have drifted into a port in the north-western Yamaguchi prefecture while hanging on to a plastic container.

The Yamaguchi coast faces the Sea of Japan, which seperates the country from North and South Korea.

The Asahi Shimbun newspaper reports that the man claims he is 25-years-old and is looking to defect. He is not believed to have had any proof of identification.

He told police he was forced to flee North Korea after being caught watching videos from South Korea.

BBC reports that the man has been handed over to immigration officers after he being questioned by local police.

The officers will determine whether his claims are genuine.

There have only been a handful of cases where North Koreans have travelled directly to Japan, with most aiming to reach their southern neighbour instead.

In one of the most promient recent cases, nine refugees were found off the coast of western Japan in 2011 during their efforts to defect to South Korea.