Japan

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'Something Just Fell Out of Me': Surprise Baby Born on Plane

Canadian woman who didn't know she was pregnant gives birth over Russia

(Newser) - One in 2,500 moms gives birth after a "cryptic" pregnancy or "denial in pregnancy," and a Canadian woman can now count herself among their number after a Calgary-to-Tokyo flight ended in the birth of her surprise baby girl, reports the CBC . Ada Guan, 23, was... More »

Japan City Wants Recognition for Kamikaze Past

But it's unclear whether UN group will grant formal approval

(Newser) - A Japanese city's plan to seek UNESCO recognition for its collection of documents related to its role as a launching base for "kamikaze" suicide attacks during World War II is raising questions over how such memories should be preserved. Kampei Shimoide, mayor of Minamikyushu, and others associated with... More »

Japan's Baby Monkey Will Stay 'Charlotte'

The royals took no offense: Oita officials

(Newser) - A monkey born in a Japanese zoo will keep its name Charlotte after all. Oita city officials settled a national debate over whether calling the monkey Charlotte offends its British royal namesake . The officials announced today they will stick to their first choice because there was no protest from Britain'... More »

Japanese Zoo Sorry It Named Baby Monkey 'Charlotte'

Naming macaque after England's new princess has proved a royal pain

(Newser) - A month ago, no one would have said boo about the name chosen by a Japanese zoo for its new baby monkey. But a month ago, Princess Charlotte Elizabeth Diana hadn't yet entered the world, and now Takasakiyama Natural Zoological Garden is fielding a "barrage of complaints" about... More »

Japan's Magnetic Train Sets Speed Record—Again

Japan hopes to sell the technology to the US

(Newser) - A week after crushing a speed record set 12 years ago, a magnetic levitation train in Japan has again set a new one. During a test run outside Tokyo today, Central Japan Railway pushed a seven-car maglev train to 374mph, topping its own world record of 366mph set on Thursday.... More »

Japan Now Biggest US Creditor

It overtakes China for first time since 2008

(Newser) - Japan has overtaken China as the top foreign holder of US Treasury securities, a position the country last held in August 2008. In its monthly report on bond holdings, the Treasury Department says total foreign holdings of Treasury debt dipped 0.9% in February to $6.16 trillion, down from... More »

Exhibit Details Japanese Experiments on US POWs

American prisoners had organs removed, were injected with seawater

(Newser) - The crew of an American B-29 bomber brought down in May 1945 by Japanese fighters were able to bail out, but the 11 men who survived met with only horror on the ground. Now their fate is being documented as part of a new exhibit at a museum on the... More »

Ex-Principal: I Paid for Sex With 12,700 Women, Girls

Yuhei Takahashi allegedly kept 147K photos in 400 albums

(Newser) - Police say they've discovered a disturbing collection of 147,600 photos of women and minors in the home of an ex-principal they arrested in Japan. Yuhei Takahashi, 64—who faces child pornography charges stemming from photos he allegedly took of sex acts involving a teen in the Philippines in... More »

Bodies of WWII Soldiers Found in Sealed Cave

Searches underway in Palau to locate more Japanese soldiers' remains

(Newser) - The island nation of Palau is preparing for a visit from Japan's Emperor Akihito next week with an unusual and grim task: It's investigating long-sealed caves on the island of Peleliu to look for the remains of Japanese soldiers from World War II. The remains of six soldiers... More »

World's Oldest Person Dies Weeks After 117th Birthday

Japan's Misao Okawa was widowed in 1931

(Newser) - The world's oldest person, a Japanese woman, died today, a few weeks after celebrating her 117th birthday. Misao Okawa died of heart failure and stopped breathing as relatives and nursing home workers stood by her side and praised her long, healthy life, said Tomohiro Okada, an official at her... More »

Japan Marks 70 Years Since Deadliest Bombing

105K died in one night of Tokyo firebombing

(Newser) - Japan mourned today for the 105,400 people killed in a single night 70 years ago, when US B-29 bombers obliterated much of Tokyo in the deadliest conventional bomb attack ever. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe bowed in a somber ceremony held in a downtown temple used as a memorial for... More »

World's Oldest Person Became Widow 84 Years Ago

Almost 117-year-old Misao Okawa loves sushi and shut-eye

(Newser) - Surrounded by flowers and family and wearing a pink kimono, the oldest person in the world celebrated her birthday a day early today in Osaka, Japan. Born on March 5, 1898, Misao Okawa turns 117 tomorrow, and even she's not entirely sure why. "I wonder about that, too,... More »

Microsoft Co-Founder Finds Sunken WWII 'Marvel'

The Musashi was the Japanese navy's largest warship

(Newser) - The wreckage of Japan's biggest World War II warship has been discovered more than a half-mile underwater in the Sibuyan Sea, and credit for the find goes to a Microsoft co-founder, AFP reports. Paul Allen tweeted photos on Monday of the Musashi , sunk by US warplanes in 1944. Allen... More »

Japan Cops Jail American for Having Adderall

Carrie Russell was planning to teach English there

(Newser) - Carrie Russell apparently thought little of shipping her Adderall to Japan before moving there to teach English. But Japanese police saw it differently, arresting the 26-year-old American last month for allegedly smuggling illegal amphetamines into Japan, the Oregonian reports. "We're left in a state of disbelief," says... More »

Japanese Buying More Flip-Phones, Fewer Smart Ones

Owning a smartphone is pricey in the country

(Newser) - Remember the golden days of yore, when your phone was a lot smaller, used primarily for calling people, and opened with a satisfying flip? Well, it seems those days haven't died in Japan, where last year, the number of flip-phone shipments actually increased, a first in seven years, Reuters... More »

Designer of Bullet Train, Soy Sauce Bottle Dies

Kenji Ekuan was former monk whose inventions went on and on

(Newser) - Japanese industrial designer Kenji Ekuan, whose works ranged from a bullet train to the red-capped Kikkoman soy sauce dispenser as familiar as the classic Coca-Cola bottle, has died, his company said. He was 85. A former monk, Ekuan crafted a tabletop bottle for Kikkoman Corp. in 1961, winning international popularity... More »

Robots Will Staff New Hotel in Japan

'Actroids' will carry your bags, clean up after you

(Newser) - If you prefer your vacations with a minimum of human interaction, you might try a hotel that's opening in Japan this summer. The Henn-na Hotel's human staff will number just 10, but that doesn't mean you won't get speedy service: Robots will be ready to help... More »

Japan Will Soon Require Workers to Take Time Off

Workaholic culture is widespread in the country

(Newser) - Workaholic habits die hard in Japan—one 36-year-old who often works 14 hours a day took just eight of her 20 paid vacation days last year, six of them because she was sick—and she says, "Nobody else uses their vacation days." But the government wants to change... More »

Japan to ISIS: 'We Will Never, Never Forgive'

Reeling country vows to continue humanitarian aid

(Newser) - Japan is reeling in the wake of yesterday's video showing the apparent beheading of journalist Kenji Goto, as an ISIS militant threatened " let the nightmare for Japan begin ." "We are deeply saddened by this despicable and horrendous act of terrorism, and we denounce it in the... More »

Japanese Journalist Apparently Beheaded in New ISIS Video

Militant with British accent shown killing hostage Kenji Goto

(Newser) - An online video released today purported to show an Islamic State militant beheading Japanese journalist Kenji Goto , ending days of negotiations by diplomats to save the man. The video, released on militant websites and highlighted by militant sympathizers on social media sites, bore the symbol of the Islamic State group'... More »

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