Afternoon Alert   -   Thursday, October 28, 2021
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.


Broadcasters led with reports on the death of a worker in Gifu yesterday when an explosion occurred during tunnel construction for the new maglev bullet train (NHK, TBS, Fuji TV, TV Asahi) and the start today of a police investigation into the landowner allegedly involved in land alterations and the creation of a massive soil mound in Atami where a mudslide killed 26 people in July (NTV).


U.S. shifts to deepening involvement with Taiwan (Sankei)

Japanese ambassador meets senior Taliban member (NHK WORLD)

Former NSS Secretary-General Kitamura forms partnership with former U.S. national security advisor (Sankei)

Editorial: Japan should support ASEAN’s diplomatic pressure on Myanmar military (The Mainichi)


Chinese ships spotted near Senkakus for ninth consecutive day (Sankei)


Japan to urge companies to share information on big shareholders (Nikkei Asia)

METI to introduce decarbonization schedules for certain industries (Nikkei)

Why is Asia paying five times more than America for natural gas? (Nikkei Asia)

Certifying biomass as renewable energy; problems with fuel procurement (Nikkei)

FSA to strengthen supervision, regulation of IT services for financial firms (Yomiuri)

COVID pushes debt at small Japanese companies to 10-year high (Nikkei Asia)

INTERVIEW: Economist seeks to solve distribution issue through growth (Jiji Press)

Editorial: Parties must explain realistic details of plans for economic revitalization (The Japan News)

Editorial: EU must strengthen its cooperation, look to future on natural gas supply (The Japan News)

TSE to extend trading hours by 30 minutes (Jiji Press)


Prime minister’s schedule on Oct. 27, 2021 (Sankei)

Infographic: LDP faction membership figures (as of Oct. 14, 2021) (Yomiuri)

Opposition unity in Japan general election proving easier said than done (The Japan Times)

Editorial: Politicians need to tackle burden posed by U.S. bases in Okinawa (The Asahi Shimbun)


60% of lower house candidates favor revising Japan’s Constitution (The Japan News)


A-bomb survivor Tsuboi, who met in Hiroshima with Obama, dies (The Asahi Shimbun)

Japan mourns death of hibakusha leader Tsuboi (Jiji Press)

Cabinet Office issues second advisory to TITP supervising organization (Nikkei)

Visa ban risks weakening of Japanese Studies, exchange programs (Asahi)

Infographic: Trend in delayed childbearing in Japan, 1980–2020 (Yomiuri)

Interview with U.K. and Norwegian ambassadors: Women in politics (Nikkei)

Unfair vaccine access is obstacle in ending pandemic: WHO’s Tedros (Nikkei Asia)


Youths believe the fault lies in the stars, not themselves, for where they are (Asahi , Shukan Diamond, Weekly Diamond)

Visionary scholars eschew Japanese harmony for American candor (Nikkei , TV Asahi)

Whether Japan will ever be led by a woman depends on women (Asahi)


PFAS above government guideline detected in groundwater at hospital in Kin Town

Okinawa Times front-paged a report saying that Ryukyu Hospital in Kin Town, which is located near Camp Hansen, announced on Wednesday that PFAS in excess of the government guideline of 50 nanograms per liter has been detected in tap water and well water there. The hospital surveyed the water following the detection of PFAS above the government guideline in the town's groundwater. According to the hospital, 81 nanograms of PFOS and 36 nanograms of PFOA were detected in well water and 52 nanograms of PFOS and 26 nanograms of PFOA were confirmed in tap water. The hospital stopped taking water from the groundwater source on Oct. 8 when the results of the survey became available. The hospital has used both well water and tap water for drinking for more than four years, but no health damage has been reported by the approximately 300 hospital staff members or 250 to 260 patients. The paper quoted a hospital official as saying that although it is unknown whether the U.S. base is the source of contamination, the hospital has secured safe water for its staff and patients.

U.S. Embassy Tokyo Media Analysis and Translation Team