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Good Luck Gazing at Mount Fuji Through This Big Black Screen

As promised, Japanese town of Fujikawaguchiko erects barrier to deter gawkers from overcrowding

(Newser) - Sorry, the screen is now up —no more snapping cute photos of Mount Fuji from a popular sidewalk spot in the Japanese town of Fujikawaguchiko. Known as a place that offers some of the best views of the iconic Japanese mountain, the town last month started erecting a large...

Parents Splitting Up in Japan Will Soon See Big Custody Shift

They'll be able to file for joint custody starting in 2026; previously, one parent was granted custody

(Newser) - Parents splitting up in Japan will soon be able to do what parents in many other developed nations already can: File for joint custody of the kids. On Friday, the country's parliament voted to make it so via an alteration to Japan's civil code, the first change to...

US, Japan Team Up for New Kind of Missile Defense

'Glide Sphere Interceptor' will counter growing threat from hypersonic weapons

(Newser) - Japan and the US on Wednesday signed an agreement to jointly develop a new type of missile defense system as the allies seek to defend against the growing threat of hypersonic weapons, which are possessed by China and Russia and are being tested by North Korea. The project was initially...

Japan Shops a New, Vulnerable Species for Its Whale Hunt

(Newser) - Commercial whaling in Japan could soon expand to include a fourth species—one already considered vulnerable. Japan currently allows hunting of the Bryde's whale, minke whale, and endangered sei whale in the North Pacific. It's now considering adding a fourth eligible species: fin whales. The fin whale, up...

Biden Refers to Japan, an Ally, as 'Xenophobic'
Japan, India Take Issue
With Biden Comments

Japan, India Take Issue With Biden Comments

Aide says president was trying to endorse US history of accepting immigrants

(Newser) - Japan and India on Saturday rebutted President Biden's assessment of them as "xenophobic" countries unwelcoming to immigrants. A Japanese official who declined to be named said Biden misunderstands the US ally's policies, the AP reports, while adding that the government understands the president was trying to stress...

It's an 'Astonishing Feat' for Japan's Moon Lander
Japan's Moon Lander
Defies All Odds

Japan's Moon Lander Defies All Odds

SLIM, thought to die in darkness, has survived 3 cold lunar nights so far

(Newser) - Nearly four months after touching down on the moon , Japan's lunar lander is still going strong—something its creators did not at all expect. The lander wasn't designed to endure the frigid temperatures, as low as -208 degrees Fahrenheit, that come with a lunar night, a period of...

Town Makes 'Regrettable' Move on Mount Fuji

Japan's Fujikawaguchiko is erecting a giant mesh barrier to discourage picture-taking

(Newser) - "Let's go see Mt. Fuji." That's the excited declaration that flashes briefly across the screen on the tourism website for the Japanese town of Fujikawaguchiko, nestled in the foothills of the famous landmark. That call to action may prove harder for visitors to fulfill soon, as...

Searchers Find Blades From Crashed Japanese Helicopters

2 Japanese navy helicopters crashed in Pacific Ocean during training

(Newser) - Two Japanese navy helicopters carrying eight crew members crashed into the Pacific Ocean south of Tokyo during nighttime training in a possible collision, leaving one dead while rescuers on Sunday searched for seven others missing, the defense minister said. The two SH-60K choppers from the Maritime Self-Defense Force were carrying...

Biden: Support for Japan, Philippines Is 'Ironclad'

China's actions at sea have caused growing concern

(Newser) - President Biden reinforced the US defense commitment to Pacific allies on Thursday as he gathered Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida at the White House. The meeting took place against a backdrop of growing concern about provocative Chinese military action in the Indo-Pacific, the AP...

In 500 Years, Everyone in Japan May Have the Same Name

Japan's residents may all have surname Sato if an antiquated civil code isn't updated, researcher says

(Newser) - An antiquated law in Japan could lead to an unusual happening in about five centuries: everyone with the same surname. That surname would be Sato, which is the conclusion on the universally shared surname by the year 2531 arising from the research of Tohoku University economics professor Hiroshi Yoshida. More...

K-Pop Star at Center of Boyfriend Brouhaha Has News

Karina, who faced scolding and threats for relationship, has split with Lee Jae-wook

(Newser) - The relationship that roiled South Korea is over. Yonhap reports K-pop star Karina and her beau, actor Lee Jae-wook, have parted ways, just a few weeks after they took their pairing public, to much backlash. "Lee decided to end the relationship to focus on the work that he is...

Oppenheimer Gets a Mixed Reaction in Japan

Film finally premieres in land devasted by two atomic bombs

(Newser) - Oppenheimer finally premiered Friday in the nation where two cities were obliterated 79 years ago by the nuclear weapons invented by the American scientist who was the subject of the Oscar-winning film. The film's release in Japan, more than eight months after it opened in the US, had been...

Japanese Health Supplement Proved Not That Healthy

Now 5 in Japan are dead, 100 are hospitalized after taking products with benikoji, a red mold

(Newser) - Five people who took Japanese health supplements have died and more than 100 have been hospitalized as of Friday, a week after a pharmaceutical company issued a recall of the products, officials said. Osaka-based Kobayashi Pharmaceutical Co. came under fire for not going public quickly with problems known internally as...

Diaper Maker Won't Make Them for Japan's Babies Anymore

Manufacturer to switch to making diapers for adults, citing low demand for infant version

(Newser) - With births at a record low for modern times in Japan, a diaper manufacturer will transition from producing diapers for little ones to those for adults. Call it a late response to the market: Japan's elderly have used more diapers than the nation's infants for more than a...

Japan Plans Another Break From Its Pacifist Principles

Public opinion on plan to sell fighter jets is divided

(Newser) - Japan's Cabinet on Tuesday approved a plan to sell future next-generation fighter jets that it's developing with Britain and Italy to other countries, in the latest move away from the country's postwar pacifist principles, the AP reports. The contentious decision to allow international arms sales is expected...

Crew Called for Help, Then the Tanker Capsized

South Korean vessel carrying acrylic acid ran into rough seas

(Newser) - A South Korean chemical tanker capsized off an island in southwestern Japan on Wednesday, authorities said, killing eight people on board. One crew member survived, while the fate of two others was unknown, reports the AP . Officials said the tanker was carrying 980 tons of acrylic acid, a corrosive organic...

Town's Residents Warned About 'Abnormal' Cat

The cat is thought to have fallen in a chemical tank in Fukuyama, Japan

(Newser) - "Chemical kitty" might sound like the name of a punk band, but it's apparently a very real thing in one Japanese city. Fukuyama has warned its residents that it appears a cat fell into a tank of toxic chemicals at a metal plating factory and emerged covered in...

Japanese Rocket Explodes Seconds After Launch
Rocket Launch
Does Not Go Well

Japanese Rocket Launch Does Not Go Well

Space One stumbles in its quest to become first private Japanese company to launch a satellite

(Newser) - Space One hoped to become the first private company in Japan to put a satellite into orbit. While the dream is still alive, the company's first attempt went horribly wrong as the rocket exploded seconds after takeoff around 11am local time Wednesday, or 10pm ET Tuesday. Livestream footage showed...

He Was a 'Big Tree' to Manga Artists Worldwide
He Was a 'Big Tree' to
Manga Artists Worldwide

He Was a 'Big Tree' to Manga Artists Worldwide

Akira Toriyama, creator of 'Dragon Ball' comic series, other popular manga and anime, dies at 68

(Newser) - Akira Toriyama, the creator of the bestselling Dragon Ball and other popular manga and anime that influenced Japanese comics, has died, his studio said Friday. He was 68. Toriyama died March 1 of a blood clot in his brain, Bird Studio said in a statement. "He was working enthusiastically...

24 Fishermen Rescued From Half-Submerged Ship

Ship was rocking in rough seas off Japanese island

(Newser) - A Japanese coast guard helicopter rescued 24 fishermen as they desperately clung to the deck of a tilting, half-submerged ship being pounded by high waves Monday morning off an island chain southwest of Tokyo. One crewmember thrown from the rocking ship into the rough seas before the arrival of the...

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