The main opposition Democratic Party of Japan regards former Prime Minister Morihiro Hosokawa as the most favorable candidate for the Feb. 9 Tokyo gubernatorial election, party members said Thursday.
The DPJ is reviewing its campaign strategy after calls grew within the party to back former health minister Yoichi Masuzoe, a potential contender in the upcoming Tokyo gubernatorial election. The party leaves open the option of supporting Masuzoe if Hosokawa does not run, the members said.
"He has started to seriously think about the matter," Hosokawa's wife Kayoko told Kyodo News on Thursday, adding that the former prime minister has a "fifty-fifty chance" of running in the election and that his decision will come out in "a few days."
Japan's job availability rose in December to its best level in 22 years while the unemployment rate improved to 3.4 percent, suggesting that companies are willing to hire more workers as corporate profits recover, the government said Friday. (Kyodo)
A Nagoya University student who says she killed an elderly woman found dead in the 19-year-old's apartment has also admitted poisoning a former high school classmate, investigative sources said Thursday. (Japan Times)
Police in Saitama Prefecture said Thursday they have arrested 11 people who, as part of an organized scam group, call up individuals claiming that they had missed a payment for using a website that is actually free to use. (Japan Today)
Paul McCartney, who had to cancel all his concerts in Japan last year due to an illness, announced on his blog Thursday that he will return to Japan for four concerts in April as part of his "Out There" world tour. (Japan Today)
Police have arrested a 19-year-old girl on suspicion of killing a 77-year-old woman. The girl, who is a student at Nagoya University, was quoted by police as saying she wanted to kill someone and that anyone would do, NTV reported Wednesday. (Japan Today)
Last week, officers from the Yotsuya Police Station in Tokyo took Takahiro Arimoto, the 44-year-old manager of massage parlor Honey Candle and one other employee into custody for the harmful employment of minors, a violation under the Labor Standards Act. (Tokyo Reporter)
Workers have begun tearing down structures at a train station here that was devastated in the deadly tsunami of 2011, citing the danger of collapse they pose to the growing number of visitors to the site. (Asahi)