Tsunami-hit town demolishes old office despite preservation calls
Japan Today -- Jan 20
Work began in northeastern Japan on Saturday to tear down a former town hall building where dozens of people died in a tsunami in 2011, despite calls from some residents to preserve it as a memorial.

The demolition of the two-story building in Otsuchi, Iwate Prefecture, came after the Morioka District Court rejected Thursday a petition to suspend the work. The building will be completely demolished by the end of February.

The town mayor and 27 officials died in the building when a massive earthquake and tsunami struck the region on March 11, 2011.

While some residents of Otsuchi said they did not want to see the building because it reminded them of the tsunami, others said it should be preserved as a memorial.

The town government is now considering preserving some of the items that were left inside the building, including a wall clock that apparently stopped after the building was inundated by tsunami waves and a ladder used by officials to evacuate to the roof.

News source: Japan Today
Sep 21
Saitama Prefectural Police launched a murder investigation following the discovery of the body of a missing boy, 9, at an apartment block in Saitama City early Wednesday, reports the Sankei Shimbun (Sept. 18). (tokyoreporter.com)
Sep 21
A court awarded damages Wednesday to a woman in her 30s who broke up with her same-sex partner because of infidelity, recognizing their common-law partnership despite same-sex marriage not being legal in the country. (Japan Times)
Sep 19
If you’ve studied the basics of computer programming, you’ll probably recognize the phrase “hello world.” It’s the textbook-recommended line of text learners type into their first program, then delight as it pops up on screen. (Japan Times)
Sep 18
The mother of Yua Funato was given an eight-year prison term by the Tokyo District Court on Tuesday for parental neglect that led to the death last year of her 5-year-old daughter. (Japan Times)
Sep 17
A 116-year-old Japanese woman has been celebrated on Respect for the Aged Day in Japan. (NHK)
Sep 17
Princess Kako, the second daughter of Japan's Crown Prince and Princess Akishino, has paid a courtesy call on Austrian President Alexander Van der Bellen. (NHK)
Sep 15
Police in Japan have arrested a 40-year-old man suspected of firing an air gun in an apparent road rage incident earlier this month. (NHK)
Sep 13
Since its launch on Aug. 8, the Netflix series “The Naked Director” has become a certifiable hit. Its audience score on the Rotten Tomatoes ratings site is 97 percent, and on the series’ IMDB page, positive user reviews (“Truly amazing, realistic and captivating,” “You will find tears, laughter, passion”) far outnumber the negative. (Japan Times)
Sep 11
Crown Princess Kiko, who celebrated her 53rd birthday on Wednesday, said she does not wish to comment on the postponement of her eldest daughter's marriage to fiance Kei Komuro. (Kyodo)
Sep 11
Tokyo Metropolitan Police have arrested an executive of an automobile services company for allegedly fabricating paperwork for vehicles used in drift racing, reports NHK (Sept. 10). (tokyoreporter.com)