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Kishida leaves for New York to deliver speech at U.N. General Assembly

Prime Minister Fumio Kishida left for New York on Tuesday to deliver an address at the U.N. General Assembly, with Japan calling for a rules-based international order amid Russia's invasion of Ukraine and China's growing maritime assertiveness.
During the trip, Kishida is also arranging to meet other leaders gathering for the assembly's one-week general debate session starting the same day, including U.S. President Joe Biden, diplomatic sources said.
Kishida may also have talks with South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol as Tokyo and Seoul try to improve their relations soured over wartime history and other issues.
In a speech during the session, Kishida is expected to call for a world free from nuclear weapons. Japan will host next year's Group of Seven summit in Hiroshima, where his constituency is located.
The annual U.N. event comes amid the war in Ukraine and tensions over Taiwan, which has divided U.S.-led major democracies and Russia and China.
The G7, comprising Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the United States plus the European Union, has imposed economic sanctions on Russia over its invasion of Ukraine.
China has been intensifying its military activities in the Indo-Pacific region. It held large-scale, live-fired drills near Taiwan last month following the visit to the self-ruled island by U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
China, which regards Taiwan as a renegade province to be reunified with the mainland, by force if necessary, opposes official contact between the island and the United States.
The war in Ukraine has revealed the dysfunction at the U.N. Security Council. Russia vetoed a U.S.-led draft resolution condemning the invasion, with China abstaining from voting.
Kishida will call for reinforcing the roles of the 193-member United Nations and reforming the 15-seat council, Japanese officials said.
In order to increase momentum toward the entry into force of the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty, Kishida is slated on Wednesday to host a leaders-level meeting of the "Friends of the CTBT" on the sidelines of the U.N. assembly, the officials said. Representatives from Australia, Canada, Finland, Germany, and the Netherlands will also attend.
Kishida is also considering giving a speech at the New York Stock Exchange, according to the officials. He is expected to call for investment in Japan.
Kishida put off his departure initially scheduled for Monday to monitor damage caused by a strong typhoon in Japan.


© KYODO
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