Politics

Japan braces for U.S. jobs-focused Biden trade policy

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As Japan cautiously awaits new U.S. President Joe Biden's policy on trade, expectations are that the new administration will continue to prioritize the protection of U.S. jobs and industries, whether it opts to return to the Trans-Pacific Partnership or resume bilateral negotiations. Trade talks are likely to differ substantially in… Read

Politics

Okinawans, former N Korea abductees urge Biden to take initiative

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Anti-U.S. base groups in Okinawa, Japanese nationals previously abducted by North Korea as well as the relatives of abductees on Thursday urged the new U.S. administration under President Joe Biden to take the initiative in resolving their respective issues. People in Okinawa have called on Biden to review a controversial… Read

Politics

Suga congratulates Biden; hopes to strengthen Japan-U.S. alliance

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Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga on Thursday congratulated Joe Biden on his inauguration as U.S. president and expressed hope to further strengthen the Japan-U.S. alliance. "Japan and the United States are allies tied firmly by bonds and shared universal values," Suga said in a tweet in English. "I look forward to… Read

Politics

Japan protests China's repeated intrusions into waters near Senkakus

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Japan strongly protested Chinese vessels' repeated intrusions into its waters near the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea at their senior diplomats' videoconference on Wednesday, the Japanese Foreign Ministry said. At the meeting on maritime security, Japan urged China to take action to address Tokyo's concerns about the Chinese… Read

Politics

Opposition raps gov't virus response as Diet debate starts

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Japan's main opposition party criticized the government in the Diet on Wednesday for its delay in declaring a state of emergency over the coronavirus pandemic and opposed its plan to penalize those infected with the virus who refuse to be hospitalized. After Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga pledged Monday at the… Read

Politics

Kono's vaccine appointment by Suga seen as neutralizing a rival

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Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga's choice of a popular minister to handle the rollout of the coronavirus vaccine is largely a move to boost rapidly-sinking support rates, but may also aim to neutralize a strong rival for his job. Suga's appointment of Taro Kono, Japan's administrative reform minister, to coordinate… Read

Politics

Aso vows to revive virus-hit economy, promote structural reforms

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Japanese Finance Minister Taro Aso pledged Monday to rejuvenate the economy badly hit by the spread of the novel coronavirus and advance structural reforms for the future after the pandemic. In his speech on the first day of this year's ordinary Diet session, Aso said the government will prevent the… Read

Politics

Kono to handle coordination of coronavirus vaccinations

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Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said on Monday that he had instructed Taro Kono, administrative reform minister, to also handle coordination of the government's preparations for delivering the coronavirus vaccine. Suga said Japan would aim to start delivering the vaccine by the end of February. "We want to make utmost… Read

Politics

Japan urges South Korea to drop wartime compensation demands

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Japan's foreign minister accused South Korea on Monday of worsening already strained ties by making "illegal" demands for compensation for the sexual abuse of Korean women and use of forced laborers during World War II. Toshimitsu Motegi, in a diplomatic policy speech in parliament, said a recent South Korean court… Read

Politics

Japan welcomes expected U.S. return to Paris climate accord under Biden

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Japan welcomes the expected return of the United States to the Paris agreement on climate change under President-elect Joe Biden, Chief Cabinet Secretary Katsunobu Kato said Monday. Biden is reportedly planning to sign about a dozen executive orders on his inauguration day on Wednesday, including one to bring his country… Read

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