Dutch gay ex-lawmaker urges Japan to promote LGBT rights

May 24, 2013

Dutch gay ex-lawmaker urges Japan to promote LGBT rights

A former lawmaker who played a big role in making the Netherlands in 2001 the first country to legalize same-sex marriage has called on Japan to make more efforts to promote the human rights of sexual minorities. “We would love to see Japan and ...

Tsunami-hit city aims to be reborn

Jan 1, 2013

Tsunami-hit city aims to be reborn

In a coastal city flattened by the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami, a project is under way to rebuild the area as a self-sustaining community that will be in harmony with nature by making use of Danish knowhow on renewable energy. The city ...

| Dec 14, 2012

Disaster-hit areas seek more than just words

In areas ravaged by the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami, voters frustrated with the slow pace of recovery and anxious about their future are looking for their elected leaders to put together a faster and more robust reconstruction effort. In hard-hit Ishinomaki, Miyagi Prefecture, ...

Efficient 'smart cities' gain traction after disasters

Aug 23, 2012

Efficient 'smart cities' gain traction after disasters

The power shortages that hit the country following the March 2011 disasters made better energy management an imperative and spawned efforts to create efficient “smart cities.” Ideas for these environmentally friendly communities that employ cutting-edge technology have been flourishing — especially in the disaster-hit ...

Moms here also face custody torment

Jun 5, 2012

Moms here also face custody torment

As Japan’s ratification of an international treaty that helps settle international child custody disputes awaits Diet approval, some mothers are dealing with the distress of their non-Japanese spouses taking their children abroad at the last minute. These women face difficulties in enlisting wide support, ...

Irish Chernobyl campaigner shares lessons with people of Fukushima

Mar 24, 2012

Irish Chernobyl campaigner shares lessons with people of Fukushima

During a fact-finding trip to Fukushima Prefecture, an Irish supporter of children affected by the 1986 Chernobyl disaster discovered “many mirror images” between the crisis here and the world’s worst nuclear accident, which still haunts people in contaminated zones. Adi Roche, 56, chief executive ...

Tokyo eateries lend Tohoku a hand

Mar 17, 2012

Tokyo eateries lend Tohoku a hand

Tokyo restaurants have started giving their patrons a chance to support Tohoku reconstruction by serving up traditional food and drink from the region and buying produce from farmers and fishermen there. An “izakaya” pub in the Ginza district, which used to specialize in traditional ...

Cherry trees to mark tsunami line

Mar 9, 2012

Cherry trees to mark tsunami line

Residents of the tsunami-ravaged coastal city of Rikuzentakata, Iwate Prefecture, have launched a project to plant cherry trees marking the points where the waves reached March 11 to warn future generations about a repeat of the catastrophe. Organizers of the project have been motivated ...

Visa problem makes separation from kids even worse

Mar 2, 2012

Visa problem makes separation from kids even worse

For some foreign parents who have been separated from their children due to divorce from their Japanese spouses, the expiration of their spousal visa makes matters worse as intervention by immigration officials can easily sever their ties with their kids. Supporters of these foreign ...