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Toward Safer Roads for Foreign Rental Car Drivers

The number of foreigners renting cars in Japan has surged in recent years. With the number of accidents involving foreign drivers increasing in popular tourist destinations, the Japanese government has set its sights on trying to curb car accidents.

Electric-Scooter-Sharing Service to Be Tested on Southern Japan Island (News)

Tokyo, Sept. 28 (Jiji Press)—Sumitomo Corp. said Thursday that it will test an electric scooter-sharing service on Ishigaki Island in Okinawa Prefecture starting by the end of March next year. The Japanese trading house will carry out the test in a partnership with the Ishigaki city government. The sharing service is designed to reduce carbon dioxide emissions that are increasing in line wit…

Shedding Light on “Formosa’s Betrayal”: Kabira Chōsei on George Kerr and Taiwanese History

Soon after World War II ended, the February 28 Incident rocked the island of Taiwan. The diplomat and scholar George Kerr explored this bloody chapter in Taiwanese history in his book Formosa Betrayed. We spoke with Kabira Chōsei, an Okinawan broadcaster raised in Taiwan under Japanese rule, about George Kerr—who taught him English in his school days—and his take on Taiwan’s past and present.

Okinawans Remember World War II Dead (Japan in Photos)

A family pays tribute to a relative killed in the Battle of Okinawa at the Cornerstone of Peace monument in the Peace Memorial Park, Itoman, Okinawa, on June 23, 2017. Every year, the prefecture commemorates the end of the 1945 battle in which more than 240,000 people died. The city of Itoman saw particularly heavy fighting in the final stages of the battle. (© Jiji)

Former Okinawa Governor Ōta Masahide Dies at 92 (News)

Naha, Okinawa Pref., June 12 (Jiji Press)—Former Okinawa Governor and House of Councillors member Ōta Masahide, who worked to reduce the southern Japan prefecture's burden of hosting U.S. military bases, died of pneumonia at a hospital in the prefectural capital of Naha on Monday. He was 92. Ōta was born in the Okinawa town of Kumejima. While studying at a teachers' school, he experienced the B…

Battle of Okinawa Memorial to Be Held in Hawaii for First Time (News)

Naha, Okinawa Pref., June 1 (Jiji Press)—A memorial service for those who lost their lives in the Battle of Okinawa will be held in Honolulu, Hawaii, for the first time on Sunday, its organizing committee said Thursday. Approximately 200 people are expected to attend the ceremony, the committee said at a press conference at the Okinawa prefectural government's head office in Naha, the southernm…

Japan Finds Document on Earliest Landing on Senkakus (News)

Tokyo (Jiji Press)—The Japanese government has announced the discovery of a document indicating that royal family members of the Ryūkyū Kingdom, which ruled the islands southwest of Japan including today’s Okinawa, landed on the Senkaku Islands in 1819, the oldest recorded visit to the Japanese-administered islands. The documented visit precedes that of a Briton in 1845, previously considered t…

Karate Hall Opens in Okinawa (News)

Tomigusuku, Okinawa Pref., March 4 (Jiji Press)—Okinawa Prefecture on Saturday celebrated the completion of a hall set up to preserve karate as traditional culture and showcase the attraction of the martial arts said to have originated in the southernmost prefecture. The Okinawa Karate Kaikan hall in Tomigusuku is "a facility that will serve as a base to preserve, inherit, and develop karate," …

Japan Continues Work at US Base Relocation Site in Okinawa (News)

Nago, Okinawa Pref., Feb. 7 (Jiji Press)—Japan's Defense Ministry on Tuesday went ahead with work in preparation for the construction of a replacement facility for the US Marine Corps' Futenma air station in Ginowan, Okinawa Prefecture. The ministry's Okinawa Defense Bureau dropped large concrete blocks into the sea off the Henoko district in Nago, also in the southernmost prefecture, even thou…

Japan to Recommend Southern Isles, Christian Sites as World Heritage (News)

Tokyo, Jan. 19 (Jiji Press)—The Japanese government on Thursday decided to recommend that islands in the southern prefectures of Kagoshima and Okinawa be added to the UNESCO World Heritage list for natural assets. At a meeting of related ministries and agencies, the government also decided to recommend the addition of Christian sites in the southwestern prefectures of Nagasaki and Kumamoto to t…

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