So who is it? From AP:
TOKYO – The Japanese government is “almost certain” a body earlier believed to belong to a Japanese hostage held in Iraq is not that of the captive, officials said Saturday.
The government had said a body found in central Iraq resembled that of hostage Shosei Koda, 24, and that it was being sent to medical experts for identification.
A Japanese doctor and officials in Kuwait examined it but found the body’s characteristics differed from Koda’s, said Chief Cabinet Secretary Hiroyuki Hosoda.
“It is almost certain the body is not Mr. Koda,” Hosoda said. “We are now collecting more information and turning our full efforts toward rescuing Mr. Koda.”
Foreign Ministry spokesman Hatsuhisa Takashima told a news conference there were several discrepancies, including that the body was dressed in Middle Eastern clothing; the face, though mutilated, had traces of a beard; and the person seemed to be about 50 years old, was overweight, and had a different dental structure.
The discovery came a day after a deadline set by militants who threatened to behead Koda unless Japan withdrew its forces from Iraq — a demand Japan rejected.