Lifestyle/Entertainment Editor, Asia, Tokyo
Elaine's Feed
May 29, 2014

North Korea agrees to reopen probe on Japan abductees: PM Abe

TOKYO (Reuters) – North Korea has agreed to reopen an investigation into the fate of Japanese citizens it kidnapped decades ago, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Thursday, a potential breakthrough in a bitter dispute between Tokyo and Pyongyang.

Japan has agreed to ease some sanctions against North Korea once the probe had been reopened and will consider providing humanitarian aid depending on how the investigation progresses, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said separately.

May 19, 2014

Japan’s Asada to sit out next season, think about retirement

TOKYO (Reuters) – Japanese figure skater Mao Asada, the veteran of two winter Olympic Games, plans to sit out the 2014-2015 competitive season but remains unsure about retirement and wants to take the year to think about her future plans.

Asada, who took a silver medal at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, had been tipped as a top contender for gold in Sochi this year but had a disastrous short program, although she rebounded with a strong free skate that left her in sixth place overall.

May 19, 2014

Olympics-Japan’s Asada to sit out next season, think about retirement

TOKYO, May 19 (Reuters) – Japanese figure skater Mao Asada, the veteran of two winter Olympic Games, plans to sit out the 2014-2015 competitive season but remains unsure about retirement and wants to take the year to think about her future plans.

Asada, who took a silver medal at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, had been tipped as a top contender for gold in Sochi this year but had a disastrous short programme, although she rebounded with a strong free skate that left her in sixth place overall.

May 15, 2014

Lawsuit to save “Angel” throws spotlight on Japan dolphin killings

TOKYO, May 15 (Reuters) – Environmental activists protesting
Japan’s killing of thousands of dolphins in a secluded cove said
they hoped a lawsuit filed on Thursday will bring attention to
the gory annual hunt.

Fishermen in the western Japanese town of Taiji corral the
dolphins before killing many for meat in a hunt that has long
been a source of controversy and was featured in the
Oscar-winning documentary “The Cove.”

May 14, 2014

Post-Fukushima, Japan’s favourite monster may never go home again

TOKYO, May 14 (Reuters) – He’s dark and lumbering, crashing
through cities and destroying them with swipes of his massive
tail and blasts of radioactive breath. Godzilla is back on the
rampage, roaring and stomping, for the first time in ten years.

But the much-anticipated return of Japan’s most famous and
beloved monster, 60 years and 28 movies after he first rose from
the depths following a hydrogen bomb test, has been filmed not
in the land of his birth but in the United States – and analysts
say there is a chance he may never go back to his homeland.

May 9, 2014

Japanese men baldly go into new Tokyo restaurant, with pride

TOKYO, May 9 (Reuters) – Bald is beautiful at a new Tokyo
restaurant, where follicularly challenged customers are welcomed
with open arms and offered discounts not available to their
hairier brethren.

The Japanese-style pub in Tokyo’s Akasaka district, not far
from the central government offices, encourages customers to
embrace their loss of hair, not hide it.

Apr 23, 2014
via FaithWorld

Justin Bieber apologizes after Japan shrine visit sparks Asian anger

Photo

(Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo, 2010/Wiiii)

Canadian pop singer Justin Bieber, whose tumultuous life has landed him in trouble more than once, on Wednesday apologized for a visit to a Tokyo shrine at the center of a bitter international row over Japan’s wartime aggression.

Bieber, 20, posted a picture on social media of himself visiting Tokyo’s Yasukuni Shrine with the heading, “Thank you for your blessings”.

Apr 23, 2014

Obama reassures Japan, other allies on China as Asia trip begins

TOKYO (Reuters) – U.S. President Barack Obama has said Washington welcomes China’s rise but that engagement with Beijing would not come at the expense of its Asian allies – as Chinese state media greeted his arrival in the region with a broadside accusing the United States of wanting to “cage” the emerging superpower.

The reassuring remarks aimed at Japan and other allies, set against a robust commentary from China’s state news agency Xinhua that also called the United States “myopic”, demonstrate the delicate balancing act Obama faces on a week-long Asia tour.

Apr 23, 2014

Obama and Abe to huddle at venerable Tokyo sushi counter

TOKYO (Reuters) – U.S. President Barack Obama and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe are due to have dinner on Wednesday, bumping elbows at the counter of a tiny basement sushi restaurant run by an octogenarian chef.

Sources close to Abe told Japanese media the prime minister thought a meal at “Sukiyabashi Jiro,” a venerable establishment in Tokyo’s bustling Ginza shopping district, would be a good way to build trust.

Apr 23, 2014

Obama reassures Japan, other allies on China ahead of visit

TOKYO (Reuters) – U.S. President Barack Obama has said Washington welcomes China’s rise but that engagement with Beijing would not come at the expense of its Asian allies – as Chinese state media greeted his imminent arrival in the region with a broadside accusing the United States of wanting to “cage” the emerging superpower.

Obama’s remarks, aimed at reassuring Japan and other allies, set against a robust commentary from China’s state news agency Xinhua that also called the United States “myopic”, demonstrate the delicate balancing act Obama faces on a week-long Asia tour.