Abe denies discussing vet school plan as favoritism scandal deepens
Japan Today -- May 23
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Tuesday denied he had knowledge of a veterinary school project at the center of favoritism allegations much earlier than he has previously admitted, as shown in a newly disclosed document.

Abe has maintained that he learned of the project in the western Japan prefecture of Ehime on Jan 20, 2017, when a government economic panel approved the project, but the document presented by the Ehime government to the Diet Monday apparently shows he met with Kotaro Kake, the chief of the school operator, and talked about the project on Feb. 25, 2015.

"The prime minister's office records were checked yesterday, just to be sure," Abe told reporters, but he said no proof of a meeting with Kake was found.

Abe has been dogged by allegations that he used his influence to sway the approval process that led to the opening last month of a veterinary department under a university operated by Kake Educational Institute in Imabari, Ehime.

Opposition parties demanded that the matter be taken up in both chambers of the Diet as the latest document from the prefectural government raises doubts about the credibility of Abe's statement about the school project.

They also demanded that the Ehime governor testify in the Diet, but Abe's ruling Liberal Democratic Party rejected the call.

News sources: Japan Today, ANNnewsCH
Jun 19
The Japan Meteorological Agency says a magnitude-6.7 quake struck the northern part of the country late Tuesday night. No fatalities have been reported. Tsunami advisories issued along the Sea of Japan coast have been lifted. (NHK)
Jun 19
Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga says people in the affected areas should remain on the alert. (NHK)
Jun 19
The Tokyo District Court on Tuesday sentenced Pierre Taki, an actor and member of Japanese techno-pop duo Denki Groove, to 18 months in prison, suspended for three years, for using cocaine. (Japan Times)
Jun 19
Almost half of singles in Japan who wish to get married are unable to find a suitable partner, with 61.4 percent of the group stating they are not doing anything to change the situation, a government survey showed Tuesday. (Japan Today)
Jun 19
A 62-year-old man wanted by police on suspicion of stabbing his former wife in Noboribetsu City, Hokkaido, has been found dead in a forest, police said Monday. (Japan Today)
Jun 18
Toyota drivers Kazuki Nakajima, Fernando Alonso and Sebastian Buemi claimed their second consecutive 24 Hours of Le Mans victory Sunday, but only after some bad luck scuttled their sister car's hopes of a win. (Kyodo)
Jun 18
Police in Kakegawa City, Shizuoka Prefecture, have arrested a 23-year-old woman on suspicion of attempted murder after she abandoned her newborn baby daughter in a business hotel’s toilet. (Japan Today)
Jun 18
Defense Minister Takeshi Iwaya apologized Monday to Akita Gov. Norihisa Satake for errors in the ministry’s geographical survey that was used to select the northeastern prefecture as a candidate for hosting a U.S.-developed missile defense system. (Japan Times)
Jun 18
Japanese e-commerce giant Rakuten and supermarket chain Seiyu are starting a drone delivery service for summer visitors to an island off Yokosuka, near Tokyo. (NHK)
Jun 17
Osaka Prefectural Police have arrested a man for allegedly stabbing a police officer and stealing his gun in Suita City on Sunday, reports Fuji News Network (June 17). (tokyoreporter.com)