Afternoon Alert   -   Tuesday, September 25, 2018
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Noon news

All networks led with reports that on Monday President Trump said his second summit with Chairman Kim will be held "in the not too distant future" and hinted that it will take place in a location other than Singapore.


Trade talks between USTR Lighthizer and Minister Motegi postponed

Fuji TV and TV Asahi reported at noon that the trade talks between USTR Lighthizer and Minister Motegi that were originally scheduled for 6:30 a.m. on Tuesday (Japan time) have been postponed to 9:30 p.m. on the same day (Japan time) at the request of the U.S. side. Fuji TV conjectured that the U.S. side made the request because it is busy dealing with trade talks with China, Canada, and other nations. The network opined that Washington is concurrently engaged in trade negotiations with multiple nations because of what it referred to as the "Trump First" policy, conjecturing that the President is hoping to reduce the U.S. trade deficit in order to win the midterm elections in November. The network said the U.S. is probably aiming to steadily move forward with NAFTA negotiations with Canada and Mexico and talks with Japan before the "trade war" with China becomes too intense.

Escalating U.S.-China trade war forcing Japanese companies to rethink supply chains (Yomiuri)

Despite close ties, likelihood of U.S. auto tariffs high unless Abe offers concessions to Trump, experts say (The Japan Times)

Yokohama receives 12 draft IR plans (Kanagawa Shimbun)

Japan hurries to regain lead in race for stem cell therapies: Australian startup closer to commercializing iPS-based treatment (Nikkei Asian Review)

Cartoon: Lonely K-9 (Kanagawa Shimbun)


FM Kono comments on possible second U.S.-DPRK summit

NTV reported at noon that Foreign Minister Kono stressed the importance of moving forward the denuclearization process in the event that a second U.S.-DPRK summit is held. He reportedly said: "I hope that the denuclearization process will move forward and the UNSC resolutions will be thoroughly implemented." The network also quoted a senior MOFA official as saying: "I hope concrete results will come out of such a summit, but it should be considered carefully if it is not going to lead to denuclearization."

Defense Minister Onodera expresses expectations for possible U.S.-DPRK talks

Sankei reported online that Defense Minister Onodera commented at a regular news conference on Tuesday on the possibility of President Trump holding a second summit with Chairman Kim in the near future. Onodera was quoted as expressing the hope that the envisaged U.S.-DPRK summit will produce concrete results that will lead to the dismantling of North Korea's nuclear and missile programs. Onodera also stated that Canada's participation in surveillance operations intended to deter the DPRK from carrying out illegal ship-to-ship cargo transfers sends the message that the pressure on Pyongyang will continue.

Japan, Turkey agree to seek early conclusion of EPA

Sankei reported online that Prime Minister Abe and Turkish President Erdogan held talks at the UN headquarters on Monday and agreed that Japan and Turkey will aim to conclude an economic partnership agreement at an early date and promote cooperation in a range of areas, including disaster preparedness. Concerning Erdogan's agreement with Russian President Putin on Sept. 17 to create a demilitarized zone in Idlib, Syria, Abe reportedly told Erdogan that he welcomes Turkey's "patient diplomatic efforts." The paper also wrote that Foreign Minister Kono held talks with his Turkish counterpart Cavusoglu ahead of the Abe-Erdogan meeting. Kono reportedly stressed to the Turkish foreign minister that it is important for Turkey to have stable relations with the United States.

Gist of PM Abe's remarks after dinner with Pres. Trump, Sept. 23 (Yomiuri)

PM Abe's schedule in New York (Tokyo Shimbun)

Cartoon: U.S.-Japan summit (Tokyo Shimbun)

Climate change to be high on 2019 G-20 Summit agenda: Abe (Jiji Press)

Japan's Kono calls for int'l support for Myanmar over refugee issue (Kyodo News)


63% "don't approve" of Abe cabinet's policy on U.S. bases in Okinawa, Asahi Shimbun-Okinawa Times-QAB joint opinion poll of Okinawa voters (Asahi)

Tamaki and Sakima neck and neck in Okinawa gubernatorial race, Kyodo News trend survey (Tokyo Shimbun)

Claims of voter manipulation cast shadow over Okinawa poll (The Asahi Shimbun)

Matsugawa ahead in Ginowan mayoral election with 30% undecided, Yomiuri poll (Yomiuri)

Ginowan mayoral election, Asahi Shimbun-Okinawa Times-QAB joint opinion poll of Ginowan voters (Asahi)

Japan Defense Ministry to use AI for record management (Jiji Press)

Dugong activists appeal U.S. court ruling on Okinawa base transfer (Kyodo News)

Nearly 70% of national research bodies lack rules on military studies (The Mainichi)


Prime minister's schedule on Sept. 24, 2018 (Sankei)

Extra Diet session following Abe's reelection to last about one month (Yomiuri)

MOFA official complains of foreign minister's "overspending" (Shukan Gendai)

DPFP to tap anti-security law citizens' group as mediator for cooperation with JCP (Yomiuri)

Constitutional issues create more problems for Rengo (Yomiuri)

Cartoon: "No" to Article 9 revision (Akahata)


Gov't backs study abroad (Kanagawa Shimbun)


Will Naomi Osaka's tennis success stop prejudice against multiracial people in Japan? (The Mainichi)

U.S. Embassy Tokyo Media Analysis and Translation Team