The Okinawa prefectural government held a memorial service in Itoman attended by some 5,800 people on Sunday on the 68th anniversary of the end of the Battle of Okinawa during World War II.
At noon, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, heads of both chambers of the Diet, Okinawa Governor Hirokazu Nakaima offered silent prayers for the war dead together with other participants in the ceremony held at the Peace Memorial Park in the city's Mabuni area, the site of the last bloodiest fight in the battle.
U.S. Ambassador to Japan John Roos joined the ceremony as the first U.S. ambassador to do so since the 1995 attendance by Walter Mondale.
About 1,000 people lined up for the opening of Starbucks in Tottori City on Saturday morning. Tottori Prefecture was the final frontier for the popular coffee shop chain that now has more than 1,000 stores in Japan's 47 prefectures. (Japan Today)
Fugu pufferfish that make beautiful "crop circles" on the seabed off Amami-Oshima island in Kagoshima Prefecture have been chosen as one of the top 10 new species for 2015 by an international research institute, according to the National Museum of Nature and Science. (The Japan News)
In a crackdown on overcharging of customers, Tokyo Metropolitan Police on Friday announced the bust of two hostess clubs in Shinjuku Ward for overcharging customers, reports the TBS News (May 22). (Tokyo Reporter)
Pedestrian crosswalk laws are all over the place no matter where you go. What's considered jaywalking varies by country, and in the U.S. each state has its own laws for exactly how far the pedestrian needs to have crossed on the crosswalk before you have to stop. (rocketnews24.com)
Tokyo Metropolitan Police on Wednesday announced the arrest of multiple organized crime and motorcycle gang members for participation in a brawl that erupted last year in Kita Ward, reports the Sankei Shimbun (May 20). (Tokyo Reporter)
A Japanese man who says he was deceived into carrying someone else's bag on a flight into Indonesia was sentenced to life in prison Wednesday for smuggling methamphetamine into the country with harsh drug laws. (Japan Today)