Afternoon Alert   -   Wednesday, August 26, 2020
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Noon news

NHK and NTV gave top coverage to reports on an approaching typhoon and the ongoing heatwave in Japan. Fuji TV gave top play to a report that Economic Revitalization Minister Nishimura said today that a decision will probably be made on whether to include travel to and from Tokyo in the "Go To Travel" campaign at a meeting of the GOJ advisory subcommittee on the new coronavirus next month. TBS led with a report that a man was found dead near the Diet building this morning, saying that he apparently committed suicide. TV Asahi gave top play to a report that a man remains missing after he fell into a massive tank in Kanazawa Ward, Yokohama, that was once used to store fuel for the U.S. military. The lid of the tank reportedly collapsed yesterday.


MOD briefs Iwakuni mayor on additional deployment of F-35Bs at MCAS Iwakuni

NHK reported that a Ministry of Defense official briefed the mayor of Iwakuni on a plan to deploy 16 F-35B fighters to replace the 12 FA-18 fighters currently deployed at the base starting in October. Noting that 16 F-35Bs were deployed at Iwakuni three years ago, the network said the number of the stealth fighters at the base will reach 32, adding that it is undecided when the deployment will be completed. Iwakuni Mayor Fukuda reportedly pointed out that the number of military planes at Iwakuni will increase by four overall, and expressed concern about a possible increase in noise and called for concrete data on how much it will increase.

East Asia military balance at risk from new missiles and drones (Nikkei Asian Review)

Documents reveal past Japan-U.S. nuclear discussion (Part 3): U.S. strategy toward China (Asahi evening edition)

Documents reveal past Japan-U.S. nuclear discussion (Part 4): Japan’s aggressive diplomacy for return of Okinawa (Asahi evening edition)


Yokotas ask for US cooperation on abduction issue (NHK WORLD)

Family of Japanese abductee meets U.S. diplomat (Jiji Press)

China jockeying to change post-pandemic world order (The Japan News)

Japan wary of China’s efforts to divide Japan, U.S., and South Korea (Nikkei)

Japan and India team up to help emerging nations go digital (Nikkei Asian Review)

Commentary: How to join the Chinese Communist Party (Nikkei Asian Review)

Editorial: Extended intelligence pact serves interests of Japan and South Korea (Nikkei Asian Review)

Kim Jong Un’s sister now said to control North Korea party nerve center (Nikkei Asian Review)

Trump re-election could calm China ties – or burn them down (The Japan Times)

Japan’s take on a most unconventional Democratic convention (The Japan Times)

Editorial: U.S. mediation changes the face of the Middle East, but more should be done (Japan Forward)

Editorial: After disrupted election, Lukashenko must listen to the voices of protest (The Japan News)


Question of cooperating in move to isolate China presents Japanese companies with test of loyalty (Sankei)

Japan debt rating would be harmed by consumption tax cut: Fitch (Nikkei Asian Review)

Osaka Gas takes 15% stake in U.S. thermal power plant (Kyodo News)

Honda to shift some UK auto production to Japan (Nikkei Asian Review)

Exclusive: Japan eyeing unique tariff cut system for U.K. blue cheese (Jiji Press)


GOJ might stop requiring hospitalization of COVID-19 patients with mild or no symptoms

Fuji TV reported at noon on the finding that the GOJ is considering removing COVID-19 patients with mild or no symptoms from the list of those who need to be hospitalized and instead have them self-quarantine at home or in hotels. The network said while COVID-19 is currently classified as a Category II designated infectious disease, which requires patients to be hospitalized, some point out that patients with mild or no symptoms are putting a heavy strain on medical institutions in terms of number of beds. The network said the GOJ is planning to announce new measures to deal with COVID-19 in the near future.

Some foreigners denied reentry into Japan despite testing negative for coronavirus August 25, 2020 (The Mainichi)

Japan startup to begin human clinical tests for COVID-19 drug in 2021 (Kyodo News)

Editorial: Coronavirus pandemic a time to lend a helping hand, not widen divisions (The Mainichi)

Infographic: New coronavirus cases and positive test rate in Tokyo (Aug. 25, 2020) (Tokyo Shimbun)

Infographic: 64,714 persons in Japan confirmed to be infected with COVID-19 (Aug. 25, 2020) (NHK digital)


Undergraduate students in Japan hit record high (Jiji Press)

Japan to allow stranded foreign tech interns to switch jobs (Kyodo News)

Family of Japanese abductee meets U.S. diplomat (Jiji Press)

Japan’s “Go To Eat” campaign contractors selected (Kyodo News)

Editorial: Buildings that survived the A-bombs should be saved for history (The Asahi Shimbun)

Group Collecting Signatures to Recall Aichi Gov. over Art Event (Jiji Press)


U.S., Japanese defense chiefs to discuss force realignment in Okinawa

Okinawa Times reported from Washington that Secretary of Defense Esper and Defense Minister Kono are scheduled to meet in Guam on Aug. 29, projecting that they will exchange views on U.S. force realignment projects in Okinawa, including the FRF construction off Camp Schwab and the relocation of Naha Military Port to Urasoe City. According to a DOD source, the GOJ has already informed the USG of a recent four-party agreement between the central government, prefectural government, and municipal governments of Naha and Urasoe to move the functions of the military port to the northern section of a seaport in Urasoe. The two officials are also expected to discuss COVID-19 infection among the U.S. military community in Okinawa.

U.S. Embassy Tokyo Media Analysis and Translation Team