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Kyodo News Digest: Sept. 23, 2022

People stage a rally against the Sept. 27 state funeral for slain former Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Sept. 22, 2022, in Kyoto, western Japan. (Kyodo) ==Kyodo

The following is the latest list of selected news summaries by Kyodo News.


Rare footage of Beatles’ iconic visit to Japan in 1966 to be screened

NAGOYA – Rare footage of The Beatles’ 1966 visit to Japan recorded by police will be screened on Saturday after a legal battle for the release of the video documenting the legendary rock band’s iconic trip.

The footage of the band’s first visit to Japan will finally be seen, but with the faces of fans and police officers obscured, after a Nagoya-based nonprofit organization lost a lawsuit seeking the release of the uncensored footage.


Japan, U.S., S. Korea oppose change of status quo amid Taiwan tension

NEW YORK – The top diplomats of Japan, the United States and South Korea on Thursday said they oppose any attempts to change the status quo of territories by force amid China’s growing assertiveness in the Asia-Pacific region, while showing their resolve to resolutely respond to any nuclear test by North Korea.

The meeting of Japanese Foreign Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and South Korean Foreign Minister Park Jin was held in New York on the margins of the U.N. General Assembly’s annual session. It came amid concerns that North Korea may carry out its first nuclear test in years.


U.S., Philippine leaders affirm freedom of navigation in S. China Sea

NEW YORK – U.S. President Joe Biden and his Philippine counterpart Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on Thursday affirmed their support for freedom of navigation in the South China Sea, where Manila has overlapping territorial claims with Beijing, according to the White House.

Marcos took office in June, succeeding Rodrigo Duterte, whose foreign policy was largely defined by his pivot to China. The Biden administration is apparently hoping to improve ties with the new leader of the Southeast Asian nation to better counter Beijing.


Young women in Japan want fewer than 2 children, 1st time since 1940

TOKYO – Most young women in Japan who are hoping to get married want only one child or none at all, the first time in postwar history that the average number of desired births has fallen below two, according to a survey, adding to concern about the country’s rapidly graying population.

The National Institute of Population and Social Security Research also found in the survey conducted in 2021 that interest in marriage had declined significantly among young adults since its last poll in 2015, although more than 80 percent still wanted to tie the knot.


FEATURE: Iidabii proving unlikely savior to those suffering religious abuse

OSAKA – It took more than a decade for iidabii to reach a point at which he could create performances about the painful experiences he had living with his mother and her strict Jehovah’s Witnesses beliefs.

Before morphing into a rapper and slam poet, he started street performances at the age of 15, around the time he had an irreparable bust-up with his mother who vehemently opposed his artistic pursuits.


U.S., Japan, others to boost climate, tech support to Pacific islands

NEW YORK – The United States, Japan and other U.S. allies and partners on Thursday vowed to enhance support for Pacific island nations in areas such as climate change and information technology infrastructure amid China’s growing influence in the region.

The agreement was reached as members of the Partners in the Blue Pacific initiative, which was launched in June with the participation of Britain, Australia and New Zealand, gathered for their first foreign ministerial meeting.


FOCUS: Japan’s intervention unlikely to stem yen’s slide

TOKYO – Japan’s currency intervention is likely to prove ineffective in overturning the underlying weakness of the yen against the U.S. dollar, even as its first attempt in 24 years in the foreign exchange market to strengthen its currency took immediate effect.

The dollar briefly plummeted below 141 yen from a 24-year high near 146 yen Thursday after the government stepped into the market to stem the yen’s slide. The action took the market somewhat by surprise, even though repeated warnings by Finance Minister Shunichi Suzuki against the yen’s recent rapid decline to 24-year lows against the U.S. currency had left the market nervous, said Masahiro Yamaguchi, head of investment research at SMBC Trust Bank.


Kishida pitches Japan’s permanent investment tax break at N.Y. bourse

NEW YORK – Prime Minister Fumio Kishida revealed a plan Thursday to make Japan’s tax break system for small-lot investment a permanent program to draw more individual assets into markets.

It is “essential” to establish a permanent tax exemption system for proceeds from investment, Kishida said in a speech delivered at the New York Stock Exchange, the world’s largest bourse, to encourage more foreign investment in Japan.

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