Hiroshima's Itsukushima Shrine undergoing repairs
NHK -- Jun 18
A major renovation project has begun at Itsukushima Shrine, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, in Hiroshima Prefecture, western Japan.

Last rebuilt in 1875, the shrine's grand torii gate has suffered damage from exposure to seawater and insects. Past inspections found cavities inside its pillars.

The first large-scale repair work in about 70 years began on Monday. Workers placed concrete blocks around the gate as a foundation for scaffolding.

Shrine officials say they will conduct a detailed survey of the gate before repairing and repainting the pillars, as well as carrying out reroofing work. They say they don't yet know how long it will take to complete the project.

News source: NHK
Jul 18
Ornately decorated floats paraded through Japan's ancient capital Kyoto on Wednesday at the climax of the annual Gion Festival. (NHK)
Jul 18
Japan is struggling to cope with hundreds of thousands of middle-aged social recluses across the country, with municipalities reporting they are critically short of social workers and other personnel needed to help them return to society. (Japan Times)
Jul 18
Johnny & Associates Inc., one of the most powerful talent agencies in Japan, is suspected of having pressured commercial broadcasting television stations to stop inviting three former members of popular boy band SMAP on their shows after they left the office in 2017, sources familiar with the matter said Wednesday. (Kyodo)
Jul 18
A Japanese policeman stabbed another officer by mistake during training when he used a real knife instead of a replica. (NHK)
Jul 18
Tokyo DisneySea will launch a new flight simulator attraction Tuesday that promises to make visitors feel as if they are soaring over famous landmarks such as the Great Wall of China and the Egyptian pyramids. (Japan Times)
Jul 18
Police in Tokyo disclosed Wednesday they are looking for a man who poked another man in the eye with what is believed to be an umbrella tip after an argument outside JR Meguro Station earlier this month. (Japan Today)
Jul 17
School-related matters led to more suicides last year among youth aged between 10 and 19 than any other issue, the government said Tuesday in its annual paper on the topic. (Japan Times)
Jul 17
Over two weeks of cloudy and rainy days in Tokyo and nearby areas has resulted in higher vegetable prices and sluggish sales of summer clothing. (Japan Times)
Jul 17
Former Emperor Akihito briefly suffered from cerebral anemia last week, forcing him to postpone his regular health checkup, the Imperial Household Agency said Tuesday. (Japan Today)
Jul 17
Toyota Motor Corp. and Japan's space exploration agency said Tuesday they have signed a three-year agreement to jointly research and develop a rover to be sent to the Moon in 2029. (Kyodo)