January 2014
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73 articles published/printed


N. Korea election could herald a generational shift

Jan 09, 2014

N. Korea election could herald a generational shift

North Korea announced Wednesday elections to its rubber-stamp parliament in March, the first under leader Kim Jong Un as he seeks to cement his grip on power after purging his uncle. The presidium of the Supreme People’s Assembly (SPA) decided the election — held ...

Escalator breakdown injures 10 in Kawasaki

Jan 09, 2014

Escalator breakdown injures 10 in Kawasaki

Ten people were injured Wednesday morning at a train station in Kawasaki when an up escalator suddenly came to a stop, police and firefighters said. A man described as being 39 years old sustained a broken leg when the accident took place at Musashikosugi ...

Sony to distribute games for PS4 via cloud

Jan 09, 2014

Sony to distribute games for PS4 via cloud

Sony Corp. will start distributing games for the PlayStation 4 via cloud computing technology this year, President Kazuo Hirai said Tuesday, revealing the electronics company’s focus on the entertainment business. In his speech on the opening day of the 2014 International Consumer Electronics Show ...

Sake boom revives rice types as Abe eyes exports

Jan 09, 2014

Sake boom revives rice types as Abe eyes exports

by Aya Takada

Farmers on Japan’s west coast will sow Nihonbare rice this year for the first time in a decade as growers around the country return to older varieties to meet demand for record sake exports. Overseas shipments of sake reached an all-time high of ¥8.5 ...

Icebreaker signals China poles goals

| Jan 09, 2014

Icebreaker signals China poles goals

A Chinese research vessel’s escape from pack ice after evacuating 52 people from a Russian ship trapped in Antarctica has shone a spotlight on the Asian power’s growing polar ambitions at both ends of the Earth. In the Arctic, China’s strategic goals include the ...

Turf war at heart of rebel-jihadist clashes in Syria

| Jan 09, 2014

Turf war at heart of rebel-jihadist clashes in Syria

Competition for control of Syria’s opposition areas and a desire to regain Western support after a suspension of aid are key factors behind a huge rebel offensive against radical jihadists, experts say. Fierce battles have pitted three massive Syrian rebel coalitions against the Islamic ...

Israeli hard line on African migrants crushes hopes

Jan 09, 2014

Israeli hard line on African migrants crushes hopes

Tumuzgee Aman fled his native Eritrea three years ago in search of a better life, making his way to Israel after a treacherous journey across Egypt’s Sinai Desert. But after briefly finding work in a copper mine, his dream came crashing down when Israeli ...

Rates down, but more smokers than in 1980

Jan 09, 2014

Rates down, but more smokers than in 1980

More people smoke worldwide today than in 1980, as population growth surges and cigarettes gain popularity in countries such as China, India and Russia, researchers said Tuesday. For instance, China boasted nearly 100 million more smokers in 2012 than it had three decades ago, ...

Meditation may offer relief from anxiety: study

Jan 09, 2014

Meditation may offer relief from anxiety: study

Meditation may help ease anxiety and depression in certain patients, and in some cases the practice may be as effective as taking antidepressant medications, said a study Monday. However, a review of scientific literature on mindfulness meditation published in the Journal of the American ...

Former Miss Venezuela slain in highway robbery

Jan 09, 2014

Former Miss Venezuela slain in highway robbery

A former Miss Venezuela and her ex-husband were shot and killed and their 5-year-old daughter wounded when they resisted robbers by locking themselves inside their car after tire punctures disabled it on an isolated stretch of highway, police said Tuesday. The slaying of Monica ...

Foreign delinquency presents special challenges

Jan 09, 2014

Foreign delinquency presents special challenges

by Tomohiro Osaki

Sitting in a dimly lit room at a training school for juvenile delinquents in Tokyo, an 18-year-old Brazilian-Japanese boy reflects on his misdeeds. Though he ended up at the reformatory about a year ago for groping a woman, the deeper story of his detention ...

First batch of chemical weapons taken out of Syria

Jan 09, 2014

First batch of chemical weapons taken out of Syria

The first batch of the most dangerous chemicals in Syria’s arsenal was loaded onto a Danish ship and taken out of the country Tuesday under tight security, an important milestone in the international operation to rid President Bashar Assad of the weapons by midyear. ...

Jan 09, 2014

Shaky foundation for recovery

The Japanese economy appears to be on the recovery path for now, thanks to the policy of the Abe administration, but the effects from the consumption tax rise, beginning in April, and the extra financial burden that households can expect under the fiscal 2014 ...

Jan 09, 2014

Fee hike should boost medical care

Revenue from the average 0.1 percent increase in medical fees for the 2014 draft budget is expected to be used mainly to improve emergency medicine and pediatric and obstetrical treatment — fields where quality care has declined in some localities because of shortages of ...

Jo Kanamori talks dance in Japan

Jan 09, 2014

Jo Kanamori talks dance in Japan

by Nobuko Tanaka

A15-minute drive from Niigata Station, just across the mighty Shinano River pouring into the sea from the Northern Alps, a massive oval-shaped hall sits amid rich green parkland. This is Niigata City Performing Arts Center, aka Ryutopia — the nation’s only public theater with ...

Hop, step and thump

Jan 09, 2014

Hop, step and thump

by Stuart Varnam-Atkin

The audience bursts into applause and a green-, black- and terracotta-striped curtain called the joshiki-maku comes down on a sparkling kabuki performance; rather, it’s rapidly pulled across from stage left to right. But as everyone knows, it’s not time to leave the auditorium, as ...

Darren Almond: All things pass

Jan 09, 2014

Darren Almond: All things pass

by James Jack

A wall of 450 flip-clocks all display 15:26 in the entryway to “Second Thoughts” at Contemporary Art Gallery, Art Tower Mito. Seconds pass … CLICK, all synchronized to the minute. The sound of 15:27 is so overwhelming it’s surprising to see only one digit ...

Jan 09, 2014

Infielder Nioka ready to hang up spikes: source

Slugging infielder Tomohiro Nioka, the MVP of the 2002 Japan Series for the Yomiuri Giants, is set to retire, a Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters source said Wednesday. Nioka, the Giants’ No. 2 pick in the 1998 draft, was traded to Nippon Ham following the ...

Vonn to miss Sochi Games

Jan 09, 2014

Vonn to miss Sochi Games

Less than two weeks after reconstructive right knee surgery in February 2013, Lindsey Vonn already was sounding a positive note, saying she was “really looking forward to Sochi” and defending her Olympic downhill gold medal. Along the way to the next Winter Games, though, ...

Ekholm tallysinks Sharks

Jan 09, 2014

Ekholm tallysinks Sharks

The Nashville Predators have been playing better recently, yet have only a couple of hard-fought points to show for their work. The effort paid off once they got back home. Mattias Ekholm’s first NHL goal proved to be the game winner as the Predators ...

Warriors reel off 10th straight win

Jan 09, 2014

Warriors reel off 10th straight win

Golden State forward David Lee is making his presence felt and giving a team with many weapons another dimension. His play of late has reached All-Star caliber, Warriors coach Mark Jackson insisted after watching Lee lead Golden State to its 10th consecutive win Tuesday ...

Dolphins GM Ireland out after six seasons

Jan 09, 2014

Dolphins GM Ireland out after six seasons

The first airborne banner calling for Jeff Ireland to be fired flew over the Miami Dolphins’ stadium in 2011. Other similar signs followed, most recently in November, and on Tuesday those wanting him out finally got their wish. Ireland’s six-year stint as general manager ...