Kerama Islands set to become national park
Yomiuri -- Jul 06
The Kerama Islands of Okinawa Prefecture and the surrounding sea, home to stunning coral reefs and a mating area for humpback whales, could be designated as a national park in 2014, Environment Minister Nobuteru Ishihara has announced.

If the plan materializes, it would be the first new national park since the Kushiro Shitsugen marshland was designated in 1987.

According to the Environment Ministry, the area is blessed with a magnificent marine environment, with its reefs, very transparent water and white sand beaches.

Source: Yomiuri
May 30
A magnitude 8.5 earthquake struck off the east coast of Japan on Saturday, shaking buildings in Tokyo, but there was no danger of a tsunami and no immediate reports of damage since the quake was extremely deep. (Reuters)
May 30
A violent volcanic eruption in Japan that forced the evacuation of an island appears to have come to a halt, the country's weather agency has announced. (9news.com.au)
May 30
The explosive eruption on Mt. Shindake in Kagoshima Prefecture on Friday is likely to have involved the direct ejection of magma, or direct subterranean contact between magma and groundwater, experts say. (The Japan News)
May 29
Twelve of the 29 suma mackerel tuna have died at Tokyo Sea Life Park in Edogawa Ward, Tokyo, since the aquarium released the fish into its tank less than a week ago, it was learned Thursday. There has been a mysterious die-off of kuromaguro bluefin tuna, hatsugatsuo and other species of bonito at the aquarium since December. (The Japan News)
May 29
McDonald's Japan is still reeling from a series of food-safety scandals. Executives have responded by cutting the number of outlets that are open 24 hours a day. (NHK)
May 30
A 60-year-old man and a seven-year-old girl drowned in a pond in Usuki, Oita Prefecture, on Friday. (Japan Today)
May 30
A day after the eruption of Mount Shindake caused the evacuation of a small island off Kyushu, evacuees on Saturday began bracing for a long stay away from home as the Meteorological Agency warned of more eruptions to come. (Japan Times)
May 29
A 45-year-old male patient at a clinic in Kadoma, Osaka, has been arrested on suspicion of attacking a woman working at the reception desk with a knife. (Japan Today)
May 29
Police in Sapporo said Thursday they have arrested a 64-year-old woman over the death of her 42-year-old mentally disabled daughter whose body was found at their apartment in Nishi Ward. (Japan Today)
May 28
A 25-year-old man on Wednesday went on trial for fatally stabbing one man and wounding three others during a 10-minute rampage in Kashiwa, Chiba Prefecture, in March 2014. (Japan Today)
May 28
The Japan Association of Zoos and Aquariums says hackers stole phone numbers and email addresses of thousands of zoo and aquarium workers nationwide in an incident earlier this year. (Japan Times)
May 27
The Japanese health ministry's plan to ban restaurants from serving raw pork including liver and other internal organs was approved at an advisory panel sectional meeting on Wednesday. (Jiji Press)
May 27
Police in Toyota, Aichi Prefecture, have arrested a 65-year-old man after three bodies were found in the ruins of his house that was destroyed by a fire on Tuesday morning. (Japan Today)
May 26
Japan's Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko have attended a ceremony in Tokyo to pray for the victims of a devastating US air raid during World War Two. (NHK)
May 26
On May 21, police in Japan's Miyagi Prefecture arrested a woman on swindling charges after the cashier at a local store erroneously handed her an extra 45,000 yen (US$370) in change. (rocketnews24.com)