The number of mountain climbers in Japan reported missing in 2012 hit a record high of 2,465, up 261 from the previous year and rising by nearly 50 pct over the past decade, police data showed Thursday.
Three-quarters of the total were aged 40 or over.
"As the mountaineering boom continues among middle-aged and older people, many climbers draw up challenging plans that do not suit their physical strength, make wrong judgments about weather conditions and head into the mountains underequipped," said an official from the National Police Agency, which compiled the data.
Trade chiefs from 12 countries involved in an ambitious Pacific free trade initiative started a three-day meeting Saturday in Sydney in a bid to make progress toward a U.S.-proposed goal of reaching a deal by year-end. (Kyodo)
Japan will check the recent travel histories of all people arriving at international airports in the country to identify those who have visited Ebola-affected West African countries, the health ministry said Friday. (The Japan News)
The government said Friday it has chosen Nobel physics prize laureates Shuji Nakamura and Hiroshi Amano and five others as this year's winners of Japan's top cultural award, the Order of Culture. (Kyodo)