#AceWorldNews – TOKYO – October 24 – Japanese prosecutors have delayed a decision on whether to charge three former executives of Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO) for their handling of the 2011 Fukushima disaster, Reuters said.
A citizens’ panel ruled in July that three former TEPCO executives should be indicted over the nuclear disaster, and the Tokyo’s District Prosecutors Office started to reinvestigate the case.
Prosecutorial Review Commissions, made up of citizen appointees, are a rarely used but high-profile feature of Japan’s legal system introduced after World War Two to curb bureaucratic over-reach.
They were given the power to force prosecutions in 2009.
Last year, prosecutors declined to charge more than 30 TEPCO and government officials.
#AceWorldNews – TOKYO – Braces itself for another powerful Typhoon called Vongfong which is presently churning toward Japan’s main islands Sunday after strong winds and heavy rain left 35 injured in the south.
The monster storm hit the southern Okinawan islands on Saturday and is now moving toward the main Kyushu and Honshu islands, where it is due to make landfall as early as Monday morning, the national weather agency said.
Vongfong—the season’s 19th typhoon—was in the southern area of Kagoshima at midday Sunday, the meteorological agency said, placing it around 230 kilometers west of Amami-Oshima island.
It is packing gusts of up to 180 kilometers per hour as it moves north-northwest.
“The typhoon is expected to make landfall on Kyushu on Monday morning,” meteorologist Hiroshi Sasaki told reporters of AFP that it will hit landfall around midday Monday.
#AceWorldNews – JAPAN – October 10 – Japan has launched public debates on restarting nuclear power plants with a first in a series of town hall meetings held in Satsumasendai, a coastal city south-west of Tokyo, that hosts the two-reactor Kyushu Electric Power Co facility, Reuters reported.
Organizers had to introduce a lottery system for those who wanted to attend, due to the high interest.
The authorities were criticized for limiting the number of participants and for banning certain questions, like evacuation plans, from discussion.
Greenpeace has described the meetings as a “farce.” Following the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster, opposition to nuclear power has been strong in Japan.
The country halted its last nuclear reactor a year ago. PM Shinzo Abe’s government would like to see the plants back on-line, and has promised tougher security measures.
#AceNewsServices – PARIS – October 09. /TASS/. The Polish Catholic mission in Paris has been allowed to place a statue of Pope John Paul II, a work of Russian sculptor Zurab Tsereteli, near the French capital’s landmark cathedral, Notre Dame, the archbishop of the Polish city of Lodz said on Thursday.
The 3.6-meter bronze statue weighing 1.5 metric tonnes, Tsereteli’s gift to the mission, will be placed in Square Jean XXIII, named after Pope John XXIII, on October 25.
Tsereteli’s sculptures can be found all over the world, from New York and London to Jerusalem and Tokyo.
Among them is a giant statue of Peter the Great in Moscow and the Tear Drop monument in New Jersey commemorating 9/11 victims.
#AceWorldNews – JAPAN (Tokyo) – October 05 – Following closely on from the recent Volcano erupting, killing 50 people to date and causing major disruption to the centre of Japan, the people brace themselves for the latest onslaught of a Typhoon Phanfone.
At least 22,000 households have been left without power in the Amami area in Kagoshima Prefecture, on the most south-westerly main island of Kyushu as powerful typhoon Phanfone moves in, reports Japan’s national public broadcaster NKH.
At least 58 residents of the area were evacuated.
According to Japan’s Meteorological Agency, the typhoon is 180km east of the island of Amami and is moving north at 15kph.
The typhoon is expected to strike the country’s main islands at about 17:00 GMT on Sunday.
It was only back on July 08 2014 when another Typhoon Neoguri slammed into Okinawa.
#AceWorldNews – JAPAN (Tokyo) – July 27 – The Japanese government lodged a protest and denounced North Korea’s Saturday missile launch which came in “violation of UN Security Council resolutions," local Mainichi newspaper reported. "We need to let them know that nuclear and missile development and economic revival won’t go together," Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said during a trip to Mexico.
Japan’s defence minister, Itsunori Onodera, ordered to gather information and stay on full alert, a ministry official told local media.
North Korea fired a short-range missile into the Sea of Japan on Saturday at 21:40 local time in a north-eastern direction without advanced warning; neither a no-fly nor no-sail zone were imposed, according to South Korea’s joint chiefs of staff.
#AceWorldNews – JAPAN (Tokyo) – July 10 – Three people died as Typhoon Neoguri hit Japan’s southwestern Kyushu island early on Thursday, bringing with it heavy rains and raging winds, Japan Today reported.
“It landed near Akune City shortly before 7 a.m.,” a Japan Meteorological Agency official said.
The typhoon is expected to move through Kyushu and then continue along the Japanese archipelago.
The typhoon came from Okinawa, where it injured dozens of people.
#AceWorldNews – JAPAN (Tokyo) – July 01 – Japan took a step away Tuesday from a US-drafted constitution that has long imposed self-imposed limits on the country’s use of military force, AP said.
The Cabinet approved a plan to allow greater use of force in a reversal of limits introduced after the end of World War II, reinterpreting the constitution on military affairs. Since the end of World War II, the Japanese constitution has forbidden the use of military force against other nations. It may only use its armed forces in self-defence.
Japan’s military has not engaged in combat since 1945.
One of the biggest changes to Japanese security policy since the war will allow the military to help defend other nations in “collective self-defence” operations.
But the prime minister says the change is needed because of regional tensions – particularly China’s military expansion, and missile and nuclear threats from North Korea.
Thousands gathered outside the Japanese prime minister’s office to protest constitutional changes that would expand Japan’s military role and allow overseas deployment.
It comes one day after a man set himself on fire in protest against a proposed law.
Protest organizers have estimated that 10,000 people – including students, pensioners, and women – attended the rally outside Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s office in Tokyo.
However, police put the number of participants at “several thousand.”
AFP – RT – AP
#AceWorldNews – JAPAN (Tokyo) – June 27 – Japan’s Coast Guard said on Friday it has sent a plane and patrol ship after a Chinese fishing boat sank some 120km north of a group of disputed islets.
They are controlled by Japan, but claimed also by China.
Five of the crew were rescued while the other five remained missing, Reuters quoted a Coast Guard official as saying.
(Trust) – The People’s Daily, the official newspaper of China’s ruling Communist Party, said on its microblog that the trawler Minxiayu 01003 had taken on water while it was fishing and sunk.
A nearby Chinese naval ship went to the scene and rescued five sailors while another navy ship is helping to look for five who are still missing, it added.
#AceWorldNews – JAPAN (Tokyo) – June 23 – Japan’s crippled Fukushima nuclear plant restarted its trouble-plagued water decontamination system for the first time in three months, AFP reported, citing the utility.
Tokyo Electric Power Co (Tepco) has been forced to repeatedly switch off its Advanced Liquid Processing System (ALPS), which attempts to decontaminate radiation-tainted water.
The move followed a series of glitches plaguing the system since trial operations began last year.
Tepco is struggling to handle a growing volume of contaminated water at Fukushima.
#AceNewsServices – JAPAN (Tokyo) – June 22 – Some 39 months after the multiple explosions at Fukushima, thyroid cancer rates among nearby children have sky-rocketed to more than forty times (40x) normal.
More than 48 percent of some 375,000 young people—nearly 200,000 kids—tested by the Fukushima Medical University near the smouldering reactors now suffer from pre-cancerous thyroid abnormalities, primarily nodules and cysts.
The Rate of Cases is Accelerating Annually at 40 Times the Normal in 2014)
More than 120 childhood cancers have been indicated where just three would be expected, says Joseph Mangano, executive director of the Radiation and Public Health Project.
The nuclear industry and its apologists continue to deny this public health tragedy. Some have actually asserted that “not one person” has been affected by Fukushima’s massive radiation releases, which for some isotopes exceed Hiroshima by a factor of nearly 30.
(Nuclear Industry Denies Link to Fukishima)
But the deadly epidemic at Fukushima is consistent with impacts suffered among children near the 1979 accident at Three Mile Island and the 1986 explosion at Chernobyl, as well as findings at other commercial reactors.
The likelihood that atomic power could cause such epidemics has been confirmed by the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission, which says that “an increase in the risk of childhood thyroid cancer” would accompany a reactor disaster.
In evaluating the prospects of new reactor construction in Canada, the Commission says the rate “would rise by 0.3 percent at a distance of 12 kilometers” from the accident. But that assumes the distribution of protective potassium iodide pills and a successful emergency evacuation, neither of which happened at Three Mile Island, Chernobyl or Fukushima.
The numbers have been analyzed by Mangano. He has studied the impacts of reactor-created radiation on human health since the 1980s, beginning his work with the legendary radiologist Dr. Ernest Sternglass and statistician Jay Gould.
Speaking on www.prn.fm’s Green Power & Wellness Show, Mangano also confirms that the general health among downwind human populations improves when atomic reactors are shut down, and goes into decline when they open or re-open.
#AceWorldNews – BEIJING – June 06 – China praised Germany Friday on the 70th anniversary of World War II’s D-Day landings for its contrition over its wartime past.
At the same time, Beijing slammed Japan for what China views as Tokyo’s continued denial of its brutal history, Reuters said. “Germany’s sincere remorse has won the confidence of the world,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said.
“But in Asia on the Asian battlefield, the leaders of Japan, which caused harm and which lost the war, are to this day still trying to reverse the course of history and deny their history of invasion,” Hong stressed.
(VOA ) – China has increasingly contrasted Germany and its public remorse for the Nazi regime to Japan, where repeated official apologies for wartime suffering are sometimes undercut by contradictory comments by conservative politicians.
Ties between the two Asian rivals worsened on December 26 when Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited Tokyo’s Yasukuni Shrine, which China sees as a symbol of Tokyo’s past militarism because it honors war criminals along with millions of war dead.
“Germany’s sincere remorse has won the confidence of the world,” Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said at a daily news briefing, when asked about the D-Day anniversary.
Read More: VOA
#AceNewsServices – TOKYO – May 31 – Two Chinese coastguard ships sailed into disputed waters off Japan-administered islands in the East China Sea Saturday, officials said, as the United States warned Beijing over increasing territorial assertiveness.
The Japanese coastguard said the vessels entered the 12-nautical-mile band of territorial waters around one of the Senkaku islands, which China also claims and calls the Diaoyus, around 10 am (0100 GMT).
Chinese vessels and aircraft have regularly approached the East China Sea archipelago — thought to harbour natural resources — since Tokyo nationalised some of the islands in September 2012, setting off the latest spate of incidents in a long-running territorial dispute.
Saturday’s incursion was the first of official Chinese vessels into the disputed waters since May 2 and the 12th this year.
China is also locked in territorial disputes, in the South China Sea, which Beijing claims almost entirely.
There have been incidences of Vietnam and China ramming each other’s vessels recently while in 2012 the Philippines lost control of rich fishing grounds after a tense stand-off with China.
Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines and Vietnam — claim parts of the sea, with Manila and Hanoi being the most vocal in opposing China’s claims. Taiwan is also a claimant.
At the annual Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore Saturday, US Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel accused China of “destabilising actions” in the South China Sea.
Reuters – Japan Today – Straits Times
Ace Related News:
- Japan Today – 31/05/2014 – http://tinyurl.com/ndd79gy
#AceNewsServices – May 25 – TOKYO – Japan must respect the right of other countries to hold joint military-naval exercises and stop trying to interfere in the Russian-Chinese naval drills, the Chinese Defense Ministry said in a statement.
According to the ministry, Japan must “stop conducting reconnaissance and creating interference in areas where naval exercises are held.
Previously, Beijing had accused Tokyo of disrupting its naval drills by intensive tracking, surveillance and direct approach of vessels amid the ongoing exercises with live fire, while Tokyo had denied it was doing anything illegal, downplaying the activities as “usual precautionary observations.”
It was not immediately clear, what activities the Japanese navy could be conducting during the ongoing Russian-Chinese ‘Joint Sea-2014’ drills. Deputy Chief of the Russian Navy, Vice-Admiral Aleksandr Fedotenko, on Sunday said that Russia and China, as two world naval powers, are already planning to hold joint naval drills in regions other than Asia-Pacific.
#AceWorldNews – TOKYO – May 21 – Workers of Japan’s crippled Fukushima Daiichi (Fukushima 1) nuclear power plant have started dumping ground waters into the Pacific ocean, the NPP operator – Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) reported on Wednesday.
Representative of the company say the dump will do the environment no harm.
According to a report carried out by EPA: Water Discharges Heavy metals and salts build up in the water used in all power plant systems, including nuclear ones.
These water pollutants, as well as the higher temperature of the water discharged from the power plant, can negatively affect water quality and aquatic life.
Nuclear power plants sometimes discharge small amounts of tritium and other radioactive elements as allowed by their individual waste-water permits.
Waste generated from uranium mining operations and rainwater run off can contaminate groundwater and surface water resources with heavy metals and traces of radioactive uranium.
Accumulation of radioactive ground waters under the NPP is one of the main problems for the clean-up workers at Fukushima.
To pervent it, TEPCO plans by 2015 to create an artificial layer of permanent frost around the power plant and slowly drain the accumulated water.
However, some experts have expressed scepticism regarding the plan.
Ace Related News:
1. EPA – Report – 22/10/13 – PDF http://cybercemetery.unt.edu/archive/brc/20120620220235/http://brc.gov/sites/default/files/documents/brc_finalreport_jan2012.pdf
#AceWorldNews – TOKYO – May 21 – A Japanese court ruled against the restart of a nuclear power plant west of Tokyo on Wednesday, according to an NHK TV report.
The court in Fukui Prefecture ruled against allowing Kansai Electric Power Co to restart reactors at its Ohi nuclear plant.
This is the first time that anti-nuclear plaintiffs have successfully sued to shut down a reactor in more than four decades, Reuters said.
All of Japan’s nuclear plants have been idled for safety checks in the wake of the 2011 disaster at Fukushima Daiichi plant.
#AceWorldNews – TOKYO – May 19 – Japan will establish new military outposts on remote islands as the country looks to bolster its defence amid a territorial dispute with China, the Yomiuri Shimbun reported on Monday.
Up to 350 troops each could be stationed on three islands in the far south-west, close to the Senkakus, which Beijing claims as its own under the name Diaoyus.
With the exception of the main Okinawa Island, Japan’s army has no bases on the chain of islands that runs from the bottom of Kyushu to Taiwan, AFP said.
#AceWorldNews – TOKYO – May 14 – Japan will observe with great interest Russian-Chinese trainings Joint Sea 2014 due in the East China Sea on May 20-26, Prime Minister of Japan Yoshihide Suga said on Wednesday.
Joint navy training in the area will not affect the status of the Shenkaku Islands, called the Diaoyu Islands in China, he believes. According to Suga, Japan controls the islands, which are the subject of an acute territorial dispute between Tokyo and Beijing.
This will be the third time Russia and China will hold Joint Sea exercise aimed at strengthening practical navy cooperation and countering various sea threats.
#AceWorldNews – TOKYO – May 10 – The Japanese Defence Ministry is planning to deploy Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) missiles in central Tokyo within three years to shield the capital from potential attacks, the Japan Times reports.
The plan is designed to beef up the capital’s defences against a possible ballistic missile attack from North Korea, according to informed sources.The PAC-3 system would be deployed in the Ichigaya district in the Shinjuku ward as early as 2017.
first order Aegis equipped destroyers to shoot them down from space using Standard Missile-3 interceptors. If they fail then the PAC-3, which only has a range of about 20 km, would form the second line of defense.
- PAC-3 batteries deployed as North Korea threatens missile launch(japantimes.co.jp)
- N. Korean missile launchpad moved into firing position – reports(usahitman.com)
- Japan quietly deploys destroyer in response to N. Korea’s missile launch(ajw.asahi.com)
- North Korea updates – As North Korean missiles are moved into launch position , beneath the surface , the struggle over leadership plays out…. China warns of a higher possibility of war than currently believed by West(fredw-catharsisours.blogspot.com)
- US to send two more missile defence warships to Japan to counter North Korea threat(telegraph.co.uk)