4 people unaccounted for after house fire in Toyama Pref


Four people are unaccounted for following a fire early Friday that burnt down a house in Tonami, Toyama Prefecture, local police and firefighters said. The fire broke out about 3:20 a.m. at the two-story wooden house of Hiroshi Miyazaki, 86, in the city of Tonami. Of the five occupants, a 24-year-old… Read


Gov't aims to have new foreign workers focus on regional areas


The Japanese government plans to take measures to make regional labor markets accessible to foreign blue-collar workers to avoid them concentrating in large cities such as Tokyo when the country starts accepting them under the new visa system next year, the government's top spokesman said Thursday. With the recent enactment… Read


LA mural seen as symbolizing Japan's wartime army to be removed


A mural depicting classical Hollywood actress Ava Gardner at a public school in Los Angeles' Koreatown neighborhood will be painted over later this month after local organizations said the work resembled the rising sun symbol on the Imperial Japanese Army's flag during World War II. The Wilshire Community Coalition, along… Read


Town in Niseko ski resort area to tax lodgers


The northern Japan town of Kutchan in the popular Niseko ski resort area is to introduce a lodging tax after the town assembly passed an ordinance on Thursday. The town aims to bring in the tax in November next year following consultations with the Internal Affairs and Communications Ministry. It… Read


Fujii becomes youngest shogi player to reach 100th win


Sixteen-year-old shogi prodigy Sota Fujii has reached his 100th victory in official matches of the Japanese board game, becoming the youngest professional player to reach the milestone at the fastest pace in history. After making his debut as the youngest ever professional shogi player at age 14 in October 2016,… Read


Ninjas 'sneak' into Abe's office to ask for tourism promotion


Ninja-clad petitioners "sneaked" into the office of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Wednesday to ask for tourism promotion by using ninja culture as a magnet in the run-up to the 2019 Rugby World Cup in Japan and 2020 Tokyo Olympics. "Even though you're all wearing such bright colors, you were… Read


U.S. military identifies 5 dead in warplanes' crash off Japan

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The U.S. military has identified five Marines who were declared dead after their refueling plane collided with a fighter jet last week off Japan's southern coast. Search and recovery operations have ended after finding only one survivor, who was aboard the fighter jet. The five crew members identified Wednesday were… Read


9 more med schools involved in misconduct after another admits exam rigging


Another university admitted Wednesday to rigging entrance exams for its medical faculty in favor of children of its graduates, raising the total tally of Japanese medical schools found having manipulated their admission process to nine. Nihon University said it favored a total of 18 applicants who are kin to graduates… Read


Remains of March 11, 2011 disaster victim returned to family


Seven years and nine months after the March 11, 2011 disaster in the Tohoku region, the remains of a body found in Kesennuma, Miyagi Prefecture, in October were identified and given to the family of the deceased. The remains were identified as that of Saiko Sato, 60, Fuji TV reported.… Read


災 chosen as kanji character best representing 2018


The kanji character 災 (sai), meaning disaster or misfortune, has been chosen as the character best representing the sentiment and events in Japan in 2018. In an event held on Wednesday afternoon and broadcast live by some TV stations, Seihan Mori, the head priest at the world-famous Kiyomizu Buddhist temple… Read

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