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Gov't to ask companies to promote telework as virus spreads

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The health ministry said Friday it will encourage more companies to promote telework and staggered working hours as part of efforts to prevent further spread of the new coronavirus in Japan. The ministry will make the request through the Japan Business Federation and other lobbies. It will also ask firms… Read

National

Quarantine nightmare still not over for left-behind cruise ship crew

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The nightmare of a 14-day quarantine is ending for most passengers on the coronavirus-stricken Diamond Princess cruise ship, but it is far from over for the more than 1,000 crew. While passengers on board were confined to their cabins around the clock apart from an hour of fresh air on… Read

Business

Some investors worry as coronavirus puts question mark over Tokyo Olympics

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As Japan struggles to rein in the spread of a coronavirus, some investors are starting to worry the epidemic could scupper the Olympics set to start in Tokyo from July 24, hitting shares of firms ranging from sports gear makers to event organizers. The epidemic has killed 2,100 people and… Read

Crime

Man admits responsibility in fatal abuse of 10-year-old daughter

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A man on Friday admitted to charges that he assaulted his 10-year-old daughter, who died in January last year in Chiba Prefecture, but has denied some of the claims leveled against him. "I never starved her or weakened her. Neither did I keep her standing, or shower her with cold… Read

World

South Korea becomes newest front in shifting virus outbreak

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Cases of a new virus swelled Friday in South Korea, making the country the newest front in a widening global outbreak centered in China and now reverberating elsewhere. South Korea said two people have died and 204 have been infected with the virus, quadruple the number of cases it had… Read

World

U.S.-Taliban truce takes effect, setting stage for peace deal

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A temporary truce between the United States and the Taliban took effect on Friday, setting the stage for the two sides to sign a peace deal next week aimed at ending 18 years of war in Afghanistan and bringing U.S. troops home. If successfully implemented, the weeklong “reduction in violence”… Read

Entertainment

Former SMAP member to leave Johnny's talent agency after over 30 years

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Masahiro Nakai, a former lead member of disbanded popular Japanese pop idol group SMAP, said Friday he will leave, in late March, talent agency Johnny & Associates Inc, which he belonged to for over 30 years. The 47-year-old said at a press conference in Tokyo that he has had difficulty… Read

National

Hello Kitty Land Tokyo temporarily closes until March 12

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Hello Kitty Land Tokyo, also known as Sanrio Puroland (https://en.puroland.jp/) on Friday announced a temporary three-week closure of its popular theme parks Hello Kitty Land Tokyo and Harmonyland (https://www.harmonyland.jp/ ) from Saturday until Thursday, March 12. The temporary closure is a precautionary measure and in line with official health and safety… Read

Business

Japanese automakers delay restart of some China plants due to coronavirus

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Japanese automakers delayed on Friday the restart of plants in China near the epicenter of a coronavirus outbreak, complying with authorities' directives, but raising the risk of further supply disruptions that could hit global car production. Nissan Motor Co said it would keep its plants in Xianyang in the central… Read

Crime

Losses from cash card collection scams surge to ¥5.21 bil in Japan in 2019

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Losses from cash card collection scams in Japan more than doubled in 2019 from the previous year, with swindlers posing as police officers or bank workers visiting victims' homes and tricking them into handing over their cash cards, according to a police report. The scam netted 5.21 billion yen, up… Read

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