National Topics

Namie radiation evacuees fear return

Oct 26, 2016

Namie radiation evacuees fear return

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Weed-engulfed buildings and shuttered businesses paint an eerie picture of a coastal Japanese town abandoned after a monstrous earthquake and tsunami triggered meltdowns in the Fukushima nuclear plant. Namie, one of the communities hardest hit by the 2011 disaster, had 21,000 residents before they ...

Support groups emerge to help female recluses

Oct 19, 2016

Support groups emerge to help female recluses

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While hikikomori (social withdrawal) is usually seen as mostly affecting men, the current way of thinking fails to take into account the many women who are effectively — and involuntarily — cut off from society, campaigners and experts say. Kyoko Hayashi, who is leading ...

Japan's laws against hate speech piecemeal, lack teeth

Oct 12, 2016

Japan's laws against hate speech piecemeal, lack teeth

When Moon Kong-hwi saw the scene, he thought the bottom of society had dropped out. It was five years ago when he witnessed people engaged in hate speech in Osaka’s Tsuruhashi district, one of the country’s famous Korea towns. Since the vitriol came at ...

Japan's working moms struggle to keep careers

Oct 12, 2016

Japan's working moms struggle to keep careers

Working mothers in Japan are jettisoning their careers and resorting to contract work amid laws that fail to support shorter hours long term. The child care and family care leave law obliges employers to reduce working hours to six a day in principle for ...