Foreign Minister Yoriko Kawaguchi left for New York on Tuesday to attend an annual United Nations gathering.

Kawaguchi was scheduled to give a speech during the U.N. General Assembly debate session slated for Tuesday evening. She was expected to call for a solution to the issue of Japanese nationals abducted by North Korea in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

Kawaguchi planned to meet Tuesday with U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan, Yoon Young Kwan, South Korean foreign affairs and trade minister, and Hoshyar Zebari, foreign minister of the Iraqi Governing Council.

She is also expected to meet Wednesday with Chinese Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing before leaving New York. She is scheduled to return to Tokyo on Thursday.

The North Korean nuclear crisis is expected to be a major item on the agenda during Kawaguchi’s meetings with Yoon and Li.

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