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Second Fukushima plant unlikely to reopen

TOKYO — Japan’s new industry minister has acknowledged it will be difficult to restart the companion nuclear plant to the one at the heart of the country’s atomic crisis, media reports said. The Fukushima Daini (number two) nuclear complex is about 12 kilometres (seven miles) from the stricken Fukushima Daiichi…

Thousands stranded after Japan typhoon kills 41

Thousands of people remained stranded in western Japan Tuesday after the death toll from a fierce typhoon rose to 41, heaping more misery on a nation recovering from the March earthquake and tsunami. Torrential rain brought by powerful Typhoon Talas, which made landfall Saturday and was the deadliest in seven…

Japan’s finance minister Noda to become PM

Japan’s premier-designate Yoshihiko Noda on Monday vowed a safe pair of hands in rebuilding the country from its tsunami-nuclear disasters after he was elected the ruling party chief. The low-key, business-friendly finance minister is set to be confirmed as prime minister on Tuesday by parliament, replacing the unpopular Naoto Kan…

Japan’s Prime Minister to resign with no clear successor

TOKYO (Reuters) – The race to pick Japan’s sixth leader in five years appeared on Friday to be shaping up as a battle between the most popular contender and a rival backed by a party powerbroker, although with five candidates in play, the outcome was hard to call. Prime Minister…

Biden praises Japan’s courage after tsunami

US Vice President Joe Biden on Tuesday praised Japan’s courage and resolve as he visited its tsunami-shattered coast, where American forces helped with a large-scale relief effort. Biden, near the end of his Asia tour, is the top-ranking American official to travel to the disaster zone where the March 11…

Japan to set up new nuclear watchdog

TOKYO — Japan will set up a new nuclear regulator under the environment ministry in the wake of the Fukushima disaster, in a bid to give the watchdog more teeth, media reported Friday. The existing Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency (NISA) has been criticised following the March 11 disaster for…

UN chief heads to Japan as nuclear crisis simmers

UN chief Ban Ki-moon arrives in Japan on Sunday, where he plans to visit the Fukushima nuclear disaster zone, as the crippled atomic power plant simmers and a food safety scare deepens. The secretary-general will visit hard-hit Fukushima prefecture on Sunday evening as one of the most senior foreign leaders…

Japan PM in Hiroshima vows nuclear-free future

A ceremony on Saturday to mark the anniversary of the Hiroshima bombing was dominated by national soul-searching on atomic power as Japan’s prime minister pledged a nuclear-free future. Marking the 66th anniversary of the world’s first atomic bombing at an annual event usually devoted to opposing nuclear weapons, Prime Minister…

Japan PM declares no-go zone around nuclear plant

TOKYO (AFP) – Japan on Thursday banned people from going within 20 kilometres (12 miles) of the tsunami-hit Fukushima nuclear plant, which has been leaking radiation for nearly six weeks. The ban, which gives legal weight to an existing exclusion zone, comes after police found more than 60 families living…

Clinton vows full support for disaster-stricken Japan

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton pledged full support for quake-hit Japan on Sunday as the operator of its stricken nuclear plant said it expects to achieve “cold shutdown” in six to nine months. Japan’s embattled Tokyo Electric Power Company(TEPCO) offered the timeline more than five weeks after a giant quake…

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