February 2014
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56 articles published/printed


Feb 02, 2014

Hashimoto to quit, seek new election

Osaka Mayor Toru Hashimoto said Saturday that he will step down to test the people’s will in a new election on his main policy goal of merging the Osaka prefectural and municipal governments into one entity. The embattled co-leader of Nippon Ishin no Kai ...

Official found dead off Kyushu

Feb 02, 2014

Official found dead off Kyushu

A member of the Cabinet Office was found dead last month in a dinghy off Kitakyushu, officials of the 7th Regional Coast Guard Headquarters said Saturday. The body of the civil servant, aged 30, was clothed in a black jacket and found with South ...

Fears widen over Kadena toxins

Feb 02, 2014

Fears widen over Kadena toxins

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Just days after the commander of U.S. Kadena Air Base, near the city of Okinawa, promised parents their children’s schools were safe from dioxin contamination, a further 50 chemical barrels have been unearthed from adjacent land and a retired U.S. Air Force major has ...

Air pollution in Asia intensifies cyclones

Feb 02, 2014

Air pollution in Asia intensifies cyclones

Surging air pollution from China and other fast-growing Asian economies has intensified winter cyclones in the Northwest Pacific, scientists announced recently. Winter cyclones in latitudes that include northwestern China, South Korea and Japan have packed stronger winds and more rain as a result of ...

Sudan orders Red Cross to suspend aid work in war-torn regions

Feb 02, 2014

Sudan orders Red Cross to suspend aid work in war-torn regions

Sudanese authorities have ordered the Red Cross to suspend its activities, the organization said Saturday, in the latest restriction to be placed on foreign aid workers in the war-ravaged country. “We have received an official letter from the HAC (Humanitarian Aid Commission) informing us ...

Indonesian militants drawn to Muslims battling in Syria: report

Feb 02, 2014

Indonesian militants drawn to Muslims battling in Syria: report

Indonesians who have joined fellow extremists fighting in Syria could help reinvigorate a once-powerful militant group responsible for major bombings in the world’s most populous Muslim country, a report said. “The conflict in Syria has captured the imagination of Indonesian extremists in a way ...

Outcry in New Delhi after student beaten to death in 'hate crime'

Feb 02, 2014

Outcry in New Delhi after student beaten to death in 'hate crime'

The beating and subsequent death in New Delhi of a university student from India’s remote northeast has sparked a furious outcry against racism and criticism of police in the Indian capital. Several hundred people protested outside a police station in the capital Saturday, shouting ...

Hurdles stall peace efforts in Phillipines

Feb 02, 2014

Hurdles stall peace efforts in Phillipines

The Philippine government faces challenges implementing an accord aimed at ending decades of conflict in resource-rich Mindanao, with the risk of violence from Muslim rebel groups not included in the deal and private armies in the area. An independent body will conduct a census ...

Trade deficit exposes weak yen woes

Feb 02, 2014

Trade deficit exposes weak yen woes

Japan’s trade deficit swelled to a record in 2013, data showed Jan. 27, as once-bumper surpluses disappear under the weight of soaring post-Fukushima energy bills, an imbalance stoked by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s cheap-yen policies. The currency has lost about a quarter of its ...

Feb 02, 2014

Bloomberg named U.N. climate envoy

Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg was appointed Friday to be the U.N. special envoy for cities and climate change, a position that will give the billionaire businessman and philanthropist an international stage to press for action to combat global warming. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon ...

Tepco retires two surviving reactors at Fukushima No. 1

Feb 02, 2014

Tepco retires two surviving reactors at Fukushima No. 1

Tokyo Electric Power Co. decommissioned the No. 5 and No. 6 reactors at its meltdown-stricken Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant in Fukushima Prefecture on Friday. The two units were the only ones that survived the Great East Japan Earthquake and subsequent tsunami that hit ...

Ukraine activist's story fuels torture squad fears

Feb 02, 2014

Ukraine activist's story fuels torture squad fears

The bloody images of Ukrainian opposition supporter Dmytro Bulatov, who says he was abducted and tortured for more than a week, have fueled fears among antigovernment activists that extrajudicial squads are being deployed to intimidate the protest movement. Bulatov, who was in charge of ...

U.S. extradition precedents don't favor Amanda Knox

Feb 02, 2014

U.S. extradition precedents don't favor Amanda Knox

Roman Polanski, Edward Snowden, Manuel Noriega — over the years, the famous and the infamous have been caught up in the legal process called extradition, which governs whether one country will turn over fugitives from justice to another country. It may be the turn ...

Feb 02, 2014

Defend dolphins, not a 'tradition'

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's argument that the force of tradition justifies the herding, capturing and slaughtering of dolphins is a flimsy one. It is an inhumane practice that should be stopped.

Feb 02, 2014

Harassment for acting like a dad

According to a Japanese trade union survey, more than one in every 10 working men have either been barred from taking childcare leave or harassed for even applying.

Tsuruga: truly a 'port of humanity'

Feb 02, 2014

Tsuruga: truly a 'port of humanity'

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The man in the black-and-white photograph wore a dark jacket with wide lapels. His hair was cut short and parted to one side. His eyes were directed toward the camera as if he were looking directly at me. I recognized him immediately: Chiune Sugihara, ...

Bending Adversity: Japan and the Art of Survival

Feb 02, 2014

Bending Adversity: Japan and the Art of Survival

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The title of “Bending Adversity: Japan and the Art of Survival” refers to an old Japanese proverb about making the best of a bad situation or transforming crisis into opportunity. Japan is no stranger to crisis, or to monumental “bending,” but will the Great ...

Fujisan

Feb 02, 2014

Fujisan

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The haunting tales included in this collection of short stories by Randy Taguchi all take place in the shadow of Mount Fuji. Fujisan, Randy Taguchi, Translated by Raj Mahtani, AMAZONCROSSING Taguchi, who has attracted something of a cult following in Japan since launching her ...

Heart of a Samurai

Feb 02, 2014

Heart of a Samurai

Heart of a Samurai, Margi Preus, AMULET BOOKS “Heart of a Samurai” is a fictionalized account of the remarkable true story of Nakahama Manjiro, who played an important part as a translator during the opening of Japan at the end of the Tokugawa Era. ...

NPB squads start spring training

Feb 02, 2014

NPB squads start spring training

The Tohoku Rakuten Golden Eagles, who last season won their first Japan Series in the franchise’s ninth year of existence, started spring training Saturday in Kumejima, Okinawa Prefecture, in preparation for the start of the regular season on March 28. The Eagles and seven ...

Feb 02, 2014

Retired ozeki Miyabiyama honored at hair-cutting ceremony

Former ozeki Miyabiyama, who needed just 12 tournaments from his sumo debut before he was promoted to sumo’s second-highest rank, had his topknot removed in the traditional hair-cutting ceremony on Saturday. Miyabiyama, who took the coach’s name Futagoyama after his retirement following last year’s ...

Japan takes control in doubles

Feb 02, 2014

Japan takes control in doubles

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Japan took a 2-1 lead over Canada with a four-set victory (6-3 7-6 (7-3), 4-6, 6-4) in doubles on Saturday in their Davis Cup World Group first-round match. Japan’s Kei Nishikori and Yasutaka Uchiyama relied on their speed and agility to defeat their taller ...

Durant streak ends in rout

Feb 02, 2014

Durant streak ends in rout

Finally, somebody stopped Kevin Durant: his coach. Not that Durant cared. The only streak he cares about is still intact. Durant’s 30-point run ended at 12 games when he scored 26 in just 30 minutes, but the Oklahoma City Thunder won their 10th in ...

Matsuyama moves up leaderboard

Feb 02, 2014

Matsuyama moves up leaderboard

Hideki Matsuyama shot a 4-under-par 67 to temporarily move into fifth place, while compatriot Ryo Ishikawa missed the cut at the Phoenix Open on Friday. Matsuyama nailed six birdies against a pair of bogeys to move within three shots of the lead in the ...