Afternoon Alert   -   Wednesday, September 25, 2019
The following information reflects the reporting of the cited news media and does not reflect the opinions of the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo. Japan Media Highlights is intended for USG use only and should not be forwarded. Visit the website here. For more information, contact TokyoMATT@state.gov.


Noon news

NHK and TBS led with reports on Prime Minister Abe's speech yesterday at the UN General Assembly, where he condemned the recent attack on Saudi crude oil facilities as an "extremely contemptible crime" without naming Iran as being responsible. NTV reported that the search continues for a seven-year-old girl missing from a campsite in Yamanashi Prefecture. TV Asahi aired a follow-up report on the murder of a couple in Ibaraki Prefecture. Fuji TV aired a news flash saying 20 elementary school pupils and their teachers were stung by bees this morning in Mihara, Hiroshima Prefecture.


Japan, U.S., ROK diplomats discuss restart of U.S.-DPRK working-level talks

NHK, NTV and TV Asahi reported today that the Foreign Ministry's Asian and Oceanian Affairs Bureau Director General Takizaki, ROK Special Representative for Korean Peninsula Peace and Security Affairs Lee, and U.S. Special Envoy for North Korea Biegun met in New York yesterday. They confirmed close cooperation in working for North Korea's denuclearization. The TV networks said it is believed that they exchanged views on the resumption of U.S.-DPRK working-level talks, which are expected to take place shortly. TV Asahi also reported that earlier in the day Takizaki and Lee held a separate meeting to discuss improving bilateral relations after the ROK announced its decision to scrap its GSOMIA with Japan.

Abe denounces Saudi oil attacks, refrains from singling out Iran (Kyodo News)

Abe, Guterres call for U.N. reform, observing N. Korea resolutions (Kyodo News)

Address by Prime Minister Abe at the Seventy-Fourth Session of the United Nations General Assembly (Kantei Website)

Commentary: What's really happening in the rest of the world (The Japan Times)

Abe urges Iran's constructive role in easing Middle East tensions (Kyodo News)

US diplomat urges Japan and China to 'condemn Iran by name' (Nikkei Asian Review)

Japan, Australia confirm cooperation over N. Korea (NHK WORLD)

Editorial: China's bid for greater influence in South Pacific a cause for concern (The Japan News)

Former Chief Cabinet Secretary Kawamura meets with South Korea's National Assembly head (Sankei)

Japanese, S. Korean biz leaders want bilateral ties fixed (Jiji Press)

North Korea exploits UN sanctions loophole to earn foreign currency (Nikkei Asian Review)

Japan, France to cooperate in recycling of carbon fiber (Nikkei)

Indonesia-Japan rail project to halve cross-Java travel time (Nikkei Asian Review)

China packs coast guard with navy personnel (Nikkei Asian Review)


EXCLUSIVE: Japan, U.S. to open respective markets by 7 b. dollars (Jiji Press)

U.S.-Japan trade deal to be a model of "fair" ties: White House (Kyodo News)

Commentary: U.S. beef finds its way back to Japan (The Japan Times)

Japan's biggest firms recycle cash piles into tech start-ups (Nikkei Asian Review)

BOJ Tankan seen showing biz sentiment deterioration (Jiji Press)

U.S.-Japan trade deal lacks timeline for auto tariff removal (Nikkei Asian Review)

Japan, U.K. exchange documents regarding mutual recognition of standards (Yomiuri)

EXCLUSIVE: Japan not to set U.S. rice import quota (Jiji Press)

Aso, Pence agree to develop Japan-U.S. economic ties (Jiji Press)

Is Japan's 'clean coal' initiative lagging behind the rest of the world? (The Japan Times)


NHK interviews NASA administrator

NHK reported this morning on an interview with visiting NASA Administrator Bridenstine. He reportedly said that it is "fully possible" for Japanese astronauts to conduct activities on the moon with their American peers under the Artemis lunar exploration plan. NHK said Bridenstine also said Japan has been an excellent partner in space exploration, so he expects the two countries can reach a broad agreement for cooperation in lunar exploration. The TV network reported that Bridenstine will be meeting with officials of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) and other relevant organizations during his visit to Japan and that he will announce plans for U.S.-Japan cooperation at a news conference later today. He reportedly also said during the interview that at this point there is no need to cooperate with China, which is rapidly expanding its space program.

Japan to support private-sector efforts for U.N. SDGs (Jiji Press)

NASA chief hits at China's 'aggressive' space activity (Nikkei Asian Review)

NASA administrator: Let's go to the moon together (The Japan News)

Japan-led initiative calls for 10 m. fuel cell vehicles in 10 years (Jiji Press)

Japan successfully launches H-2B rocket (Jiji Press)

Editorial: World should take seriously youth anger over climate change (The Asahi Shimbun)


U.S. Ambassador William Hagerty: Japan-U.S. alliance and trends in East Asia (J2Top)


Prime minister's schedule on September 24, 2019 (Sankei)

Gov't to replace Assistant Chief Cabinet Secretary Kanehara (Mainichi)

Abe names close aides to key security posts, raising concerns (The Asahi Shimbun)


Gov't to conduct largest-ever cyberattack exercise in November in preparation for 2020 Games (Yomiuri, Evening edition)

FSA to thoroughly inspect financial institutions' cybersecurity measures ahead of 2020 Games (Nikkei)

Islet off Hokkaido completely vanishes: Japan Coast Guard probe (The Mainichi)

Papers on 2016 Osprey crash in Okinawa sent to prosecutors (Jiji Press)


Okinawa not pleased with conclusion of Coast Guard probe into 2016 Osprey crash

Ryukyu Shimpo and Okinawa Times gave prominent front- and inside-page coverage to the Japan Coast Guard's decision yesterday to send criminal papers to the prosecutors regarding the crash of an Osprey in waters off Nago in 2016 without identifying the pilots responsible for the accident because it has been unable to obtain the U.S. military's cooperation in the investigation. While the JCG is now seeking to have the case tried on the charge of an act that endangered aviation safety, Okinawa Times projected that the prosecutors are unlikely to indict anyone. The papers underscored that local officials and residents claimed the JCG probe was "insufficient" in the absence of cooperation from the U.S. military. They reportedly said that the SOFA once again stood in the way of a viable Japanese investigation.

U.S. Embassy Tokyo Media Analysis and Translation Team