Abe orders steps against S Korean seizure of Nippon Steel assets
Japan Today -- Jan 07
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has directed ministries to look into countermeasures after plaintiffs in South Korea took legal steps to seize the local assets of a Japanese steelmaker that has refused to comply with a court order to pay compensation for wartime forced labor.

"It is extremely regrettable. I directed related ministries to consider specific measures based on international law to show our resolute stance" in regard to the matter, Abe said in a TV program aired on Sunday, although he did not elaborate.

Lawyers representing the South Korean plaintiffs have launched procedures to seize assets belonging to Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corp in the country, according to an official statement Wednesday. In response, Japan's Foreign Minister Taro Kono urged Seoul to prevent Japanese companies from being treated unfairly.

Abe did not specify the potential countermeasures, but they could include taking the case to the International Court of Justice, according to government sources.

South Korea's top court ordered the steelmaker in October to compensate four South Koreans who were victims of forced labor during Japanese colonial rule. The decision brought an immediate rebuke from Japan, which maintains that the right to seek compensation was terminated under a 1965 treaty signed between the two countries.

In another wartime forced labor case, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd faces a similar order by a South Korean court.

News source: Japan Today
Jun 15
Iran's supreme leader told Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe on Thursday that it was pointless to reply to a message he had brought to Tehran from U.S. President Donald Trump, as a peacemaking visit was overshadowed by attacks on tankers in the Gulf of Oman. (Japan Today)
Jun 14
Japanese trade minister Hiroshige Seko said Thursday that two tankers carrying "Japan-related" cargo were attacked near the Strait of Hormuz. (Japan Today)
Jun 13
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe called on Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on Wednesday to avoid a further escalation of tensions and an unintended military conflict in the Middle East, as he sought to nudge Tehran toward dialogue as a mediator with the United States. (Kyodo)
Jun 13
A public uproar has forced the government to retract a controversial report claiming that retired couples reliant on public pensions also need sizable savings, but this backpedaling could further delay Japan's much needed reckoning with the overburdened program. (Nikkei)
Jun 12
Japan's Financial Services Minister Taro Aso says he will not accept a controversial report that says elderly couples need 20-million yen for retirement. He says this is not the government's stance. (NHK)
Jun 12
Japan's Defense Ministry has confirmed that a Chinese aircraft carrier, the Liaoning, navigated between two islands that are part of Okinawa Prefecture. (NHK)
Jun 11
Japanese Defense Minister Takeshi Iwaya said Monday the crash of an Air Self-Defense Force F-35A stealth fighter into the Pacific Ocean two months ago was likely caused by "spatial disorientation" of the pilot, rather than technical problems with the aircraft. (Kyodo)
Jun 09
Ministers in charge of trade and digital economy from G20 countries will discuss trade issues on Sunday, the second day of their meeting in Tsukuba, north of Tokyo. (NHK)
Jun 07
The Lower House of Japan's Diet has unanimously adopted a resolution urging a lawmaker to decide whether to give up his seat over a controversial remark about four Russian-held islands claimed by Japan. (NHK)
Jun 07
Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is expected to visit Iran next week amid rising tensions between the Middle Eastern country and the United States. (NHK)