Japan: Typhoon Hagibis leaves a trail of destruction
16 October 2019 | 6:00 am
At least 35 people have died in Japan after one of the worst typhoons to hit the country in more than half a century. Search and rescue operations are underway as locals struggle to come to terms with the carnage.
Mount Aso volcano spews a giant column of ash thousands of metres into the sky, after the late-morning eruption in southwest Japan. The active volcano ejected hot gas and ash as high as 3,500 metres (11,500 feet), and sent stones tumbling down its grassy slopes.
A Netflix-funded anime academy in Tokyo trains the next generation of cartoon artists as global demand for the genre soars. Japan is facing a shortage of skilled animators, in part because most face years toiling in low-paying jobs to learn the ropes, meaning much of the painstaking frame-by-frame drawing work is outsourced overseas.
Japan is holding a parliamentary election, which is the first big test for the new prime minister. A poor showing for the ruling party could threaten a return to the country's history of revolving-door premiership.
Prime Minister Fumio Kishida's Liberal Demorats are expected to retain enough seats to keep power, but the new administration will need to get the economy back on track while navigating regional security challenges.
India's Narendra Modi has spoken in Glasgow on Monday and Japan's new Prime Minister Fumio Kishida was en route. But President Xi Jinping of China, the world's biggest emitter of greenhouse gases, skipped attendance.
In 2015, Shiori Ito was a young journalist who went to meet a would-be mentor for drinks, only for the night to end in him raping her. She won a civil case against him in 2019, but only after years of fighting a judicial system that seemed determined to look the other way. Ito's memoir "Black Box" is the story of one young woman's quest for justice in a country where talking about sexual assault, and even sex education, is still very much taboo. She joined us for Perspective and told us that things are gradually moving in the right direction, but that she still receives "threatening emails every day" for speaking out.
Japan has stopped new bookings onto incoming flights after identifying the first cases of the Omicron strain of Covid-19. The country has also tightened its quarantine requirements for all arriving passengers, and extended a ban on non-citizens coming from ten countries in southern Africa. Travel companies have seen their shares tumble in recent days as governments tighten border rules in response to the new strain. Also today, Australia's economy feels the pinch from the recent lockdowns.
For a wealthy nation, Japan has a high proportion of seniors who have jobs - from babysitters to gardeners. With an aging population, the country is encouraging the "silver generation” to go back to work. Many are reveling in the new challenge.
Authorities have said at least 208 people have died in the Philippines, with thousands of others losing their homes. Rescue operations continue around the clock.
Local officials are informing the public through social media posts about the extent of damage in their own regions, with one official saying at least 63 died in his province. Emergency rescue operations are under way.
Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa returned to Earth on Monday after a 12-day journey into space, ending a practice run for his planned trip around the moon with Elon Musk's SpaceX in 2023.
The Yakuza have long been one of the biggest criminal organisations in the world. At the height of their power in the 1960s, the Japanese Yakuza had more than 180,000 members. This Japanese mafia was rich, much feared, and virtually untouchable. But now their numbers, money and power have dwindled. There are only 23,000 Yakuzas left today, and they are older and poorer.
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