Chickens infected with highly pathogenic avian influenza have been found at a poultry farm in the town of Taragi in Kumamoto Prefecture, southwestern Japan, the farm ministry said Sunday.
This is the first bird flu case reported in Japan in three years.
A total of some 112,000 chickens at the farm and another the same farmer operates in the village of Sagara in the prefecture will be culled to prevent the disease from spreading.
The Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries convened a panel of experts to discuss measures to deal with the incident. While the route of the infection is still uncertain, Prof. Toshihiro Ito of Tottori University, chairman of the panel, told reporters after its meeting that migratory birds may have brought bird flu viruses from South Korea hit by the disease.
Japan on Monday began its annual "Cool Biz" campaign, which encourages workers to dress more casually to help reduce energy use, with government offices allowing polo shirts, Hawaiian-style aloha shirts and similar attire. (Japan Times)
The search on the ground for the last missing person in the series of powerful earthquakes that hit Kumamoto Prefecture recently was terminated on Sunday due to persistent fears of secondary disasters. (Jiji Press)
Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida conveyed Tokyo's concerns over the situations in the East China Sea and the South China Sea to his Chinese counterpart, Wang Yi, during their meeting in Beijing on Saturday. (Jiji Press)
In the latest development in the gambling scandal involving Yomiuri Giants players, the Metropolitan Police Department on Friday arrested restaurateur Satoshi Saito, 38, on suspicion of running gambling operations for the purpose of gain and former Giants pitcher Shoki Kasahara, 25, on suspicion of assisting the operations. (the-japan-news.com)
The Osaka District Public Prosecutor's Office has filed charges of drug trafficking against a 40-year-old woman who left a large quantity of illegal drugs inside a fast-food outlet, reports the Asahi Shimbun (April 30). (Tokyo Reporter)
An increasing number of people are using the "furusato nozei" hometown donation program to support Kumamoto Prefecture, southwestern Japan, which has been hit hard by a recent series of strong earthquakes. (Jiji Press)
A 28-year-old nursery school teacher who forced a 4-year-old boy to eat fried chicken covered with wasabi and recorded it on her smartphone, has received a suspended sentence from the Tokyo District Court. (Japan Today)