US criticizes S.Korean drills near Takeshima
NHK -- Aug 28
The US State Department has criticized South Korea's recent military drills near the Takeshima Islands. South Korea controls the islands. Japan claims them.

A spokesperson issued a statement to NHK on Tuesday after the two-day regular exercises that were aimed at thwarting an attempt to land on the islands.

The statement says that "given the recent disagreements" between Seoul and Tokyo, "the timing, messaging, and increased scale" of the military drills "are not productive toward resolving ongoing issues."

The statement also says "the United States does not take a position regarding the sovereignty" of the islands, adding that "the question of the sovereignty of these islands" is for the two countries "to resolve peacefully."

It is unusual for Washington to criticize South Korean military exercises near the Takeshima Islands.

The statement is believed to be intended to show that the US does not want the relations between its two allies to deteriorate further.

News source: NHK
Feb 17
Americans began leaving a quarantined cruise ship in Japan on Monday to board chartered flights home as the number of new coronavirus cases diagnosed on the vessel jumped to 355. (Japan Times)
Feb 17
As Japan grapples with the expanding new coronavirus outbreak, six more people — five in Tokyo and another in Aichi Prefecture — tested positive Sunday for the deadly virus, local authorities said. (Japan Times)
Feb 17
The ruling Liberal Democratic Party submitted an amendment to the Diet in January to expand the “widow’s deduction” covering single parents who have never been married. (Japan Times)
Feb 16
Health authorities in Japan are hurrying to come up with effective measures to contain the spread of the new coronavirus after they found it hard to track down the infection routes of some cases. (NHK)
Feb 15
The Tokyo District Court on Friday sentenced a 57-year-old man to 18 months in prison, suspended for four years, over an incident last April in which he left knives on Prince Hisahito’s desk at his junior high school in the capital. (Japan Times)
Feb 14
Japan has confirmed its first death of a person infected with the new coronavirus in the country. Health ministry officials say the Japanese woman in her 80s was a resident of Kanagawa Prefecture, just south Tokyo. (NHK)
Feb 13
Lottery sales of tickets for the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics are to begin at a center in Tokyo in late April for Japan residents who apply by postcard. (NHK)
Feb 13
Nissan Motor has filed a lawsuit with a Japanese court against former chairman Carlos Ghosn, seeking 10 billion yen, or about 90 million dollars, in damages. Ghosn is now in Lebanon after skipping bail in Japan. (NHK)
Feb 13
The Japanese government plans to offer subsidies to face mask manufacturers to help them boost their production capacity. (NHK)
Feb 12
Japan's Immigration Services Agency is to tighten the screening process for issuing student visas, increasing tenfold the number of countries subject to stricter checks starting with foreign nationals applying from April. (Nikkei)