Japan abduction case may figure at G8 meet

June 25, 2008 at 2:07 AM

TOKYO, June 25 (UPI) -- Japan plans to bring up the issue of North Korean abductions of its nationals at the Group of Eight Summit next month in Hokkaido.

"We expect that the Korean Peninsula issue, the hottest topic, will be naturally discussed, and during that discussion, nuclear missiles or abduction ... are issues that should be talked over," Kyodo reported Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Nobutaka Machimura as saying.

The abduction issue is a key point of contention at the six-party talks on North Korea's denuclearization, expected to resume soon after being stalled since last December.

The abduction controversy relates to Japanese nationals kidnapped in the 1970s and 1980s by North Korean agents and what has happened to them since then. Five of those abducted returned to Japan in 2002 and North Korea has said another eight died. Japan maintains at least dozen more are yet to be accounted for by North Korea.

Japan is also keen that the United States keeps North Korea on its list of terrorism-sponsoring nations until the abduction issue is resolved.

The three-day G8 meeting starting July 7 will be attended by leaders of Britain, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia and the United States.

Separately, the United States expects North Korea to present its nuclear activities disclosure by Thursday.

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