June 2013
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How the Ark of the Covenant got to Ethiopia

Jun 30, 2013

How the Ark of the Covenant got to Ethiopia

by Lesley Downer

According to the Bible, the Koran and several detailed Ethiopian texts, the Queen of Saba/Sheba, named Makeda, visited Solomon in Jerusalem in the 10th century B.C. They had previously exchanged letters full of questions and riddles. When she arrived, bringing gifts of gold, spices, ...

Aso: Poor English saved bankers from '08 crisis

Jun 29, 2013

Aso: Poor English saved bankers from '08 crisis

Japanese banks emerged from the 2008 global credit crisis largely unscathed because their senior employees did not speak English well enough to get into trouble, Finance Minister Taro Aso said. Aso, who doubles as deputy prime minister, said Friday that bankers in Japan had ...

Opposition slams ruling bloc on jobs deregulation

Jun 29, 2013

Opposition slams ruling bloc on jobs deregulation

by Reiji Yoshida

Major party leaders held their first online debate Friday ahead of the July 21 Upper House election, with opposition chiefs voicing concern that ruling bloc-proposed employment deregulation may further worsen the working conditions of younger generations. Opposition leaders also raised concerns over Japan’s planned ...

Dragons' Yamai tosses no-hitter against BayStars

Jun 29, 2013

Dragons' Yamai tosses no-hitter against BayStars

Daisuke Yamai, who was famously denied an opportunity to complete a perfect game in the 2007 Japan Series, threw the 88th no-hitter in the history of Nippon Professional Baseball on Friday as the Chunichi Dragons defeated the Yokohama BayStars 9-0 in Central League action. ...

Abe wants to gut public protections: expert

Jun 29, 2013

Abe wants to gut public protections: expert

by Tomoko Otake

If the Liberal Democratic Party succeeds in rewriting the Constitution, it would severely scale back fundamental human rights and strip the public of various civil liberties, a prominent constitutional scholar warns. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, while focusing for now on his economic policies, looks ...

Tokyo 2020's chances looking good

| Jun 29, 2013

Tokyo 2020's chances looking good

by Ed Odeven

The much-anticipated IOC 2020 Evaluation Commission Report, which was made public on Tuesday, shines the spotlight on the strengths and weaknesses of the three candidate cities. Tokyo, Madrid and Istanbul now have a little more than two months to find ways to increase support ...

Nintendo's game development to revive Wii U

Jun 29, 2013

Nintendo's game development to revive Wii U

Nintendo Co., the world’s biggest maker of video game machines, plans to revive demand for its Wii U through the release of its own new titles as sales of the console failed to meet forecasts amid a lack of software. Building sales momentum will ...

Jun 29, 2013

19 officials tapped to help handle 21 TPP issues

The government said Friday it will appoint 19 negotiators for the 21 areas covered by the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade liberalization talks, as it gears up for joining the negotiations from late July. The negotiators, officials from the Foreign, farm and trade ministries as well ...

Jun 29, 2013

Police put abductee info on Web

The National Police Agency said Friday it will have prefectural police forces start publishing online the names, pictures and other data about people possibly abducted by North Korea to solicit information from a wide range of sources, after obtaining consent from their relatives. The ...

Jun 29, 2013

Pension fund panel to review portfolio

A government investment panel tasked with reviewing the nation’s public pension portfolio will hold its first meeting Monday, sources said. The panel, chaired by University of Tokyo professor Takatoshi Ito, will have about five members, they said. It will compile ideas for hiking the ...

Jun 29, 2013

Blanket tests for mad cow disease will end Sunday

Blanket testing for mad cow disease will end Sunday, 12 years after the program was started in October 2001 after Japan’s first case was found, the government said Friday. Blanket testing “was significant for removing the people’s insecurity,” health minister Norihisa Tamura said. “As ...

Jun 29, 2013

Sony: Sanctioned Iran firms got gear it sold via Dubai

Sony Corp. said it sold almost $13 million (¥1.3 billion) in video and medical equipment to dealers in Dubai who resold it in Iran, including to groups under official U.S. sanctions. In a U.S. filing Thursday, Sony said it sold broadcast equipment, security cameras ...

Obamas visit the Door of No Return

Jun 29, 2013

Obamas visit the Door of No Return

It was a brief but symbolically powerful moment. President Barack Obama stepped alone into the frame of the Door of No Return on Senegal’s Goree Island on Thursday afternoon, peering out at the Atlantic Ocean from the same vantage point that thousands of African ...