March 2013
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Mar 27, 2013

Turkey touts enthusiasm for 2020 bid

A resounding majority of Istanbul residents back the city’s candidacy to host the 2020 Olympic Games, Turkish Sports Minister Suat Kilic said Monday. “Eighty-three percent of Istanbul’s population support the bid -that’s 11 million people who want a city which bridges East and West ...

Mar 27, 2013

Ex-judo gold medalist Yamashita selected to spearhead efforts to end abuse

Former Olympic gold medalist Yasuhiro Yamashita will assume the responsibility for eradicating abuse within the All Japan Judo Federation, the body decided Tuesday. At an extraordinary session of the federation’s board of directors, Yamashita was appointed to take charge of the federation’s “declaration to ...

Mar 27, 2013

Tepco to boost compensation zone

Tokyo Electric Power Co. will expand the geographic area eligible for compensation for damages from harmful rumors of radiation-contaminated agricultural, marine and forestry products beyond its crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant. Iwate and Miyagi prefectures will be added to six prefectures, including Fukushima, ...

Mar 27, 2013

787 flight-tested with new batteries

Boeing Co. said Monday it conducted a successful test flight of its troubled 787 Dreamliner jet equipped with a new, enhanced battery system. A 787 jet flew for two hours mostly around Washington state, in a step toward resuming operations after Dreamliners were grounded ...

Mar 27, 2013

Sharp, Foxconn still talking, still differ

Foxconn Technology Group and Sharp Corp. will continue talks after their one-year deadline to reach an investment accord expires Tuesday, two sources said. The firms have been unable to resolve differences about control and no agreement is expected soon, the sources said, asking not ...

Mar 27, 2013

Myanmar unrest death toll hits 40

The death toll from recent sectarian violence in central Myanmar has risen to 40 after eight bodies were pulled from the wreckage of a riot-hit town, state media reported Tuesday. The clashes were a stark reminder of the challenge that Muslim-Buddhist tensions pose to ...

Mar 27, 2013

Kenya to recount presidential poll

Kenya’s Supreme Court on Monday ordered a recount of votes cast at 22 polling centers, after presidential elections in which a second-round runoff was only avoided by the narrowest of margins. “Re-tallying is to be done in 22 polling stations,” Supreme Court Judge Smokin ...

Mar 27, 2013

Spring snowstorm grounds U.S. flights

A huge snowstorm stretching from St. Louis to Washington on Monday grounded hundreds of flights and left residents wondering when winter would finally give way to spring. Nearly a week after the spring equinox, huge swaths of the U.S. remained in winter’s clutches. The ...

Mar 27, 2013

Another push for tourists planned

The government will compile an action plan by July to more than double the annual level of foreign tourists to 18 million in 2016, officials said Tuesday. “Tourism is a very important growth sector that supports our country’s economic growth and revitalization of local ...

Mar 27, 2013

Effort to lure more ASEAN Muslims

In line with government efforts to bring in more foreign tourists, the ASEAN-Japan Center will provide guidance on its website starting Monday to help the tourism industry be more accommodating for Muslims. According to the center, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations market accounts ...

Mar 27, 2013

U.S. sanctions on Zimbabwe to stay

The United States is reviewing its sanctions on Zimbabwe but has not yet decided to follow the European Union in easing an assets freeze and travel visa ban, a top official said Monday. Washington congratulated the Harare government for holding a “peaceful and credible ...

Mar 27, 2013

Taiwan to hold first major drill since '08

Taiwan on Tuesday unveiled plans for its biggest live-fire military exercise since 2008, aimed at reviewing the island’s defense capabilities against a simulated Chinese invasion. The operation will take place on April 17 on the Penghu islands in the middle of the 180-km strait ...

Mar 27, 2013

Zambia ex-leader Banda arrested

Former Zambian leader Rupiah Banda was arrested Monday and charged with abuse of authority over an oil deal struck with a Nigerian firm while he was in power, an investigator said. “President Rupiah Banda has been formally charged and arrested in connection with the ...

Mar 27, 2013

Man who planned Seattle attack jailed

A man was jailed for 18 years Monday for planning to attack a military recruiting center with machineguns and grenades, as prosecutors thanked the local Muslim community for helping foil the plot. Abu Khalid Abdul-Latif, 34, was also sentenced to 10 years of supervised ...

Mar 27, 2013

Israel to unblock Palestinian funds

Israel is to immediately unblock revenue it collects on behalf of the Palestinian Authority, frozen last year in retaliation for the Palestinians winning upgraded U.N. status, the premier’s office said Monday. The decision came after a visit last week by U.S. President Barack Obama ...

Mar 27, 2013

Firm develops solar panel cleaner robot

Kurashiki, Okayama Prefecture-based Miraikikai Inc. on Tuesday unveiled a prototype of what it claims to be the world’s first solar panel-cleaning robot that does not use water and runs automatically. Miraikikai aims to market it from next year, with a focus on the Middle ...

Mar 27, 2013

Berlusconi's ally guilty in mafia case

An Italian appeals court on Monday upheld the conviction of an ex-senator for mediating between former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi and the Sicilian Mafia in the 1970s. “I hoped the sentence would go differently, but I accept it,” Marcello Dell’Utri said after the court ...

Mar 26, 2013

Cyprus bailout's long-term impact uncertain

European leaders Monday hailed a last-minute bailout for Cyprus as an important step in defending their unified currency, but some officials and analysts questioned whether the deal raised new problems that could still threaten the survival of the euro. The arrangement will grant Cyprus ...