Kathleen Benoza
Travelers in front of a Suntory duty-free shop at Kansai International Airport in December
Jun 25, 2024
Duty-free sales at Japan's department stores tripled in May
Record sales were achieved with the help of a significant influx of Chinese tourists and the yen’s weakness.
Prime Minister Fumio Kishida attends a news conference in Sao Paulo, Brazil, on Saturday.
JAPAN / Politics
May 5, 2024
Kishida, fresh off Latin America visit, vows to zero in on political funds reform
Grappling with record-low approval ratings, the prime minister hopes to amend the Political Funds Control Act during the current session of parliament.
The departure lobby for domestic flights is crowded with travelers at Haneda Airport in Tokyo on Saturday, the first day of this year's Golden Week holidays.
Apr 28, 2024
Golden Week crowds greeted with high temperatures as holiday period kicks off
The mercury soared as millions of travelers were venturing to both international and domestic destinations.
A crew member walks past an SH-60K helicopter on the deck of the Maritime Self-Defense Force's Hyuga-class Ise helicopter carrier during a joint exercise between the U.S. and Japan in the Philippine Sea on Jan. 31.
Apr 23, 2024
U.S. military and MSDF ocean observation ship to join hunt for crashed helicopters
The search effort is ramping up as officials work to narrow down the cause of the deadly crash.
Contact was lost with the two SH-60K helicopters, each carrying four crew, in an area east of Torishima in the Izu Island chain during anti-submarine warfare training Saturday night.
Apr 21, 2024
At least one dead, seven missing after two MSDF helicopters crash off Izu Islands
The two aircraft were believed to have collided during a nighttime training anti-submarine drill, Defense Minister Minoru Kihara said.
A bill on joint custody passes during a Lower House plenary session in Tokyo on Tuesday.
JAPAN / Society
Apr 16, 2024
Bill allowing joint custody after divorce clears Japan's Lower House
The move would bring Japan closer to adopting a practice seen in other countries.
Akebono waves an American flag as he watches U.S. skaters in Nagano on Feb. 5, 1998, ahead of the Winter Olympics.
Apr 11, 2024
Sumo legend Akebono, first foreign-born yokozuna, dies at 54
Akebono, born Chadwick Haheo Rowan in Waimanalo, Hawaii, became the 64th yokozuna in 1993 and gained immense popularity.
Shizuoka Gov. Heita Kawakatsu speaks to reporters in the city of Shizuoka on Wednesday.
JAPAN / Politics
Apr 10, 2024
Shizuoka governor submits letter of resignation over controversial remarks
He initially planned to quit during an assembly session in June, but he has been under pressure to step down earlier.
Philippine, Australian, Japanese and U.S. warships take part in the four nations' first-ever joint military drills in the South China Sea on Sunday.
JAPAN / Politics
Apr 7, 2024
Philippines, U.S., Australia and Japan hold joint military drills in disputed South China Sea
The exercises came as the Chinese military held a “joint maritime and aerial combat patrol” in an unspecified area of the waterway.
Los Angeles Dodgers star Shohei Ohtani singles during the fifth inning against the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field in Chicago on Saturday.
Apr 7, 2024
MLB commissioner says Ohtani and interpreter gambling probe to wrap up in 'short' time
The top MLB official also praised the Los Angeles Dodgers superstar for his move to stem questions over his involvement in the scandal.
Streptococcal Toxic Shock Syndrome (STSS) is caused by bacteria called group A streptococcus, the same type that causes a strep throat infection, which affects mostly children. A strep A throat infection is not the same as STSS, however.
JAPAN / Science & Health / EXPLAINER
Apr 5, 2024
Japan's tissue-damaging bacterial disease: What you need to know
Misconceptions are fueling jitters at home and abroad, with travelers considering putting off their plans to visit the country.
A poster for "Oppenheimer" is displayed at a theater in Tokyo's Shinjuku Ward on Friday. The film's Japan debut came eight months after its global release.
Mar 29, 2024
'Oppenheimer' opens in Japan eight months after global release
Japan screenings were delayed as the worldwide premiere was only weeks before the anniversary of the 1945 bombings in Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
Kobayashi Pharmaceutical has announced a recall of its products.
JAPAN / Science & Health
Mar 27, 2024
Concerns mount after two deaths linked to Kobayashi Pharma supplement
A government probe is being conducted to establish whether the supplement, which contains beni kо̄ji red fermented rice, led to the deaths.
The Los Angeles Dodgers' Shohei Ohtani delivers a statement during a news conference at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles on Monday.
Mar 26, 2024
Ohtani denies betting on baseball and accuses ex-interpreter of lying and theft
The baseball star expressed shock over the gambling scandal involving his long-time ex-interpreter, in his first public comments on the matter.
A colorized scanning electron micrograph of group A streptococcus bacteria
JAPAN / Science & Health
Mar 24, 2024
Tokyo issues warning as rare but deadly STSS bacterial infections rise
Concerns are growing over the spread of streptococcal toxic shock syndrome (STSS), often dubbed the “flesh-eating disease.”
Los Angeles Dodgers Shohei Ohtani watches the MLB season-opening game against the San Diego Padres along with interpreter Ippei Mizuhara (left) in Seoul on Wednesday.
Mar 21, 2024
Ohtani’s longtime interpreter fired amid illegal gambling allegations
ESPN reported that at least $4.5 million in wire transfers were sent to a bookmaking operation, which is under federal investigation.
Artisan Suzanne Ross says Japanese lacquerware is a "treasure that belongs to the world."
JAPAN / Society
Mar 20, 2024
Wajima artisan’s livelihood, four decades in the making, upended by disaster
Lacquerware artist Suzanne Ross' life was upended by a massive earthquake. Now, she's determined to keep her craft alive.
A U.S. Marine Corps MV-22 flies near Marine Corps Air Station Futenma in Ginowan, Okinawa Prefecture, on Thursday morning.
JAPAN / Politics
Mar 14, 2024
U.S. military resumes Osprey flights in Japan
The resumption came after Washington last week lifted a worldwide flight ban on the aircraft following a deadly crash last year.
Riho Fukuyama, 24, said that the emotional damage from the abuse by her father felt particularly significant when she was in university, where she took classes on child care. She experienced flashbacks whenever she did case studies that involved abuse.
JAPAN / Society
Mar 13, 2024
Woman discloses real name after seeking legal recourse over father's sex abuse
Riho Fukuyama, 24, hopes that by openly sharing her story, other victims of sexual abuse will feel empowered to speak out.
Measles is highly contagious and is characterized by symptoms such as a mild to moderate fever and a cough, followed by high fever and rash. The virus spreads through airborne transmission.
JAPAN / Science & Health
Mar 12, 2024
Health ministry urges caution after measles outbreak
Eight cases have been confirmed among passengers of a flight from the United Arab Emirates that landed at Kansai International Airport in late February.


Tokashiki Beach acts as a sanctuary for sea turtles and offers ideal snorkeling waters. It was also the site of the U.S. Army’s preliminary invasion that led to the 1945 Battle of Okinawa, which resulted in the deaths of nearly 150,000 people.
On Okinawa's Tokashiki Island, life's a beach — one of the best in the world