Afternoon Alert   -   Thursday, August 6, 2020
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, Fuji TV, and TV Asahi gave top play to reports that today marks the 75th anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, saying that the memorial ceremony was held on a much smaller scale than usual owing to the coronavirus outbreak. TBS led with a report on the extreme heat across Japan today. NTV gave top play to a report on a video of a man being asked to give false testimony at the trial of former LDP member Tsukasa Akimoto, who was arrested for allegedly accepting bribes from a Chinese gambling firm.


DOS spokesperson comments on 75th anniversary of atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki

TV Asahi reported at noon that on the occasion of the 75th anniversary of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, a DOS spokesperson stressed that "this year marks a more important milestone" and "August 6 and 9 continue to be days to reflect on the past and renew our commitment to build a peaceful world." The network said the deputy chief of mission of the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo is expected to attend both cities' memorial ceremonies. The network quoted Secretary of State Pompeo as saying: "President Trump has made clear one of his top priorities is ensuring that we don't have a really bad day in the world as a result of a nuclear weapon being used." The Secretary reportedly stressed the importance of holding a strategic dialogue between the U.S., Russia, and China as a way to prevent a nuclear war.

Secretary Pompeo announces policy to remove Chinese apps from U.S. app stores

Fuji TV reported that Secretary of State Pompeo announced a new policy to drastically restrict communication services by Chinese firms, including removing the Chinese messenger app WeChat from app stores. According to the network, the Secretary said that Chinese apps such as TikTok and WeChat are tools for Chinese Communist Party content censorship and pose a grave threat to personal data of American citizens. The Secretary said such Chinese apps will be removed from app stores in the U.S. in order to prevent the theft of personal data. The network added that the U.S. is also planning to limit Chinese cloud services by the major online commerce company Alibaba and major Internet search engine Baidu in order to block access to research data on the coronavirus. NHK carried a similar story online.

Foreign ministers of Japan, UK agree to cooperate on COVID-19

Fuji TV reported at noon on a meeting between visiting Foreign Minister Motegi and British Foreign Secretary Raab in London on Wednesday. According to the network, Motegi expressed high expectations for the vaccine currently being developed by Oxford University, and the two ministers confirmed close bilateral cooperation in the development of COVID-19 vaccines and drugs. The network said the two ministers also shared grave concern over the situation in Hong Kong, and agreed on bilateral cooperation in protecting the rights of Hong Kong's citizens and the various foreign companies there. They also reportedly agreed on the importance of swiftly concluding a bilateral economic partnership agreement.

In Senate hearing, next U.S. Ambassador to Japan says, “Japan should shoulder greater responsibility” (Nikkei digital)

Trump’s new envoy to Japan wants auto trade deal (Nikkei Asian Review)

U.S. envoy to Japan nominee wants Japan to take bigger alliance role (Kyodo News)

US ambassador-nominee expects more from Japan (NHK WORLD digital)

Chinese ship used underwater vehicle to collect samples off Okinotorishima (Sankei)

Editorial: Tokyo and Seoul must avoid tit for tat over wartime labor (Nikkei Asian Review)

Japan, Bangladesh leaders agree to work together to combat pandemic (Kyodo News)

Editorial: Japan must act on new evidence of abductions by North Korea (Japan Forward)


U.S. military Ospreys land at Hokkaido ASDF base without prior notice (Tokyo Shimbun)

Gov’t should discuss introducing “active defense” to ensure cybersecurity: expert (NIKKEI Business Daily)


Japan’s bank transfer system to open access to fintech companies (Nikkei Asian Review)

Maglev extension to Osaka in 2037 difficult: JR Tokai chief (Jiji Press)

Editorial: Deepen discussions on challenges of realizing central bank digital currency (The Japan News)

Japan’s food self-sufficiency rate inches up in FY 2019 (Jiji Press)


Sony to develop satellite with Univ. of Tokyo, JAXA (Jiji Press)


Governor Koike to ask residents not to visit hometowns during Obon holidays

Fuji TV reported at noon on the finding that Tokyo Governor Koike is expected hold a press conference today to call on residents not to return to their hometowns during the Obon holidays if they can avoid doing so. The governor is also expected to ask residents to give special consideration to elderly people if they do decide to return to their hometowns. The network said the Tokyo government is planning to convene a meeting of experts prior to the governor's press conference, adding that Tokyo is expected to keep its alert for the coronavirus outbreak at the highest level. In addition, the alert for the medical care system in Tokyo will likely be maintained at the second highest level.

Novel coronavirus lab planned for Nagasaki Univ. (The Japan News)

Japan eases reentry ban as stranded foreign residents weigh future (Nikkei Asian Review)

Asian ports tighten quarantine, leaving sailors stuck at sea (Nikkei Asian Review)

Aichi to declare own state of emergency amid resurgence of virus (The Japan Times , Kyodo News)

Infographic: Trends in new coronavirus cases in Tokyo by transmission route – Family and nightlife areas (Tokyo Shimbun)

Infographic: New coronavirus cases and positive test rate in Tokyo (Aug. 5, 2020) (Tokyo Shimbun)

Infographic: 43,519 persons in Japan confirmed to be infected with COVID-19 (Aug. 5, 2020) (NHK digital)


Prime minister’s schedule on Aug. 5, 2020 (Sankei)

Japan’s Foreign Minister to visit Southeast Asian countries (The Japan News)

Komeito intends to draw up its own vision of missile defense (Yomiuri)

COVID-19 cases are climbing in Japan. Where is Shinzo Abe? (The Japan Times)

Interview: Kishida remains eager to run in next LDP leadership race (Jiji Press)

Nishimura marks 100th daily coronavirus press briefing (Jiji Press)

Japan prime minister: Measures against coronavirus are top priority now (The Japan News)

Japan off-session Diet debates on epidemic to restart Aug. 19 (Jiji Press)

Vote-value gap tops 2 times for 6 Japan lower house districts (Jiji Press)


Analysis of social media use in the Tokyo gubernatorial election: Nikkei and U. Tokyo (Nikkei)


Ex-residents of disputed islets to pray for ancestors from sky (Jiji Press)

Editorial: Memories of dreadful suffering from atomic bombings must be preserved (The Japan News)

U.S. grad student studies reconstruction in Minamisanriku (Tokyo Shimbun)

Remembering Hiroshima and Nagasaki 75 years on (Nikkei Asian Review)

Japanese population logs record drop of over 500,000 (Jiji Press)


There are no minimalists in the time of coronavirus (Shukan Bunshun digital , Yahoo!News Japan)

With all eyes on “museum girls,” campaign ends amidst accusations of gender discrimination (Asahi, Tokyo Shimbun)

Potato salad controversy” leads women to speak up about misogyny in Japan (Mainichi)


Okinawa governor expresses displeasure over part falling off aircraft

Okinawa Times wrote that Kadena Air Base told the paper on Wednesday that the F-15 from which a part dropped on Tuesday belongs to the base and that the object that fell was a metal part weighing about 3.6 kg. The paper wrote that although the base confirmed the incident at around 10:30 a.m., the prefectural government was not informed through the Defense Ministry’s Okinawa Bureau until around 8:45 p.m., more than 10 hours after the incident. Governor Tamaki told reporters on Wednesday that the incident posed a serious risk to all residents of Okinawa and that the base should temporarily halt all training involving aircraft to investigate the cause of the incident. The paper wrote that the governor is planning to lodge a protest with the 18th Wing at Kadena AB.

Ryukyu Shimpo ran a similar report, adding that the U.S. Air Force told the paper on Wednesday that it will continue training in order to maintain its readiness, fulfill the obligations of the United States, and defend the free and open Asia-Pacific region.

U.S. Embassy Tokyo Media Analysis and Translation Team