Law recognizing indigenous Ainu enacted
NHK -- Apr 20
A law recognizing the Ainu ethnic minority as an indigenous people of Japan has been enacted.

The Ainu mainly live in Hokkaido, northern Japan.

The legislation was approved at an Upper House plenary session on Friday.

The law stipulates for the first time that the Ainu are an indigenous people, and calls for the creation of a society in which they can take pride in their heritage. It also holds the central and local governments responsible for promoting measures to achieve the goal.

It calls for establishing a subsidy program for regional revitalization aimed at helping local authorities implement projects to promote Ainu culture.

It also calls for deregulation to make it easier for the Ainu to gather wood in state-owned forests and catch salmon in local rivers, as part of efforts to help them conserve their cultural traditions.

Land minister Keiichi Ishii told reporters that it is important for the Ainu to maintain their ethnic honor and dignity and pass their culture to future generations to create a vibrant society of coexistence.

He added that his ministry will work toward steady implementation of the law by taking into account views expressed in Diet debate.

法律で初めてアイヌ民族を「先住民族」と位置付ける「アイヌ民族支援法」が参議院本会議で可決・成立しました。 この法律では、アイヌに対する差別などを禁止する基本理念や観光振興を支援するための交付金の創設が明記されました。
News sources: NHK, ANNnewsCH
Aug 24
Japan's government has announced that ballistic missiles are believed to have been launched from North Korea on Saturday morning. (NHK)
Aug 23
Japan's Foreign Minister Taro Kono has summoned South Korea's ambassador and lodged a protest at Seoul's decision to end an intelligence-sharing agreement between the two countries. (NHK)
Aug 23
The US Department of Defense has expressed its "strong concern" and "disappointment" at South Korea's decision to terminate its intelligence-sharing pact with Japan. (NHK)
Aug 23
Japan's capital is set to lay claim to the country's tallest building in 2023, when developer Mori Building aims to complete a 330-meter tower as part of a major redevelopment. (Nikkei)
Aug 23
Japan's space agency said Thursday its Hayabusa2 space probe returning to Earth late next year will drop its capsule containing asteroid samples in Australia's southern desert. (Kyodo)
Aug 23
A man affiliated with Japan's largest crime syndicate was shot Wednesday in Kobe apparently in connection with a feud among factions of the Yamaguchi-gumi organization in the western Japan city and surrounding areas, police said. (Japan Today)
Aug 22
With the Rugby World Cup kicking off Sept. 20 in Japan, communities across the country are preparing for the 500,000-plus visitors expected to attend. (Nikkei)
Aug 22
A Shinkansen bullet train made an emergency stop after one of its doors opened while speeding through northeastern Japan. (NHK)
Aug 22
The number of South Korean tourists visiting Japan fell last month to its lowest in nearly a year as visitors canceled travel plans amid deteriorating relations between the neighbors, Japanese government data showed on Wednesday. (Japan Times)
Aug 21
Korean Air says it will suspend more flights from South Korea to Japan, due to lower travel demand amid worsening bilateral ties between the two countries. (NHK)