Museum of Japan's indigenous Ainu culture opens
NHK -- Jul 13
A national facility devoted to the indigenous Ainu people and their culture opens on Sunday in their ancestral region of Hokkaido in northern Japan.

The National Ainu Museum and Park in Shiraoi has a museum, a hall for the performance of traditional Ainu dance and instrumental music, as well as a reconstructed Ainu village.

The facility, also called Upopoy, is designed to serve as a base for reviving and developing the Ainu culture, which is on the verge of extinction.

Upopoy means "singing in a large group" in the Ainu language.

Speaking at a ceremony for the opening of the facility on Saturday, Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga Yoshihide said the Ainu people's effort to uphold their honor and dignity for younger generations is vital in building a vibrant society with cultural diversity.

He also said the government will do its best to help the facility develop and promote the cause so that many people will visit it from inside and outside Japan and touch the spirit of coexistence of diversified peoples and cultures.

The facility hopes to receive one million visitors annually.

But due to the coronavirus epidemic, it plans to only accept those with reservations for the time being.

Workshops to experience Ainu culture, including one of Ainu cookery, will also be postponed.

アイヌ文化復興の拠点となる民族共生象徴空間「ウポポイ」が北海道白老町に12日、オープンしました。  北海道・鈴木直道知事:「自然豊かななかでアイヌの歴史、文化を体験して頂いて、北海道を巡って頂く」  アイヌ文化の復興拠点となる初めての国立施設、ウポポイのオープニングセレモニーにはアイヌのルーツを持つ俳優・宇梶剛士さんなどが出席しました。入場は予約制ですが、開園前には約300人が並びました。  訪れた中学生:「すっごい楽しい。何日か入り浸りたい」  訪れた女性:「すごく広くてきれいで見やすい」  ウポポイはアイヌ文化を五感で感じることができるということです。
News sources: NHK, ANNnewsCH
Aug 09
Japan is Asia's first industrialised economy, yet it ranks 121, below Angola on the Gender Gap Index. (CNA)
Aug 08
Teachers and education officials are calling for students to pay special heed to the risk of heat exhaustion this summer as schools across Japan shorten their summer holidays and hold more classes than usual to make up for closures caused by the coronavirus pandemic. (Japan Times)
Aug 06
The population of Japan has fallen for the 11th straight year. The amount of the decline has set a record for six years in a row. (NHK)
Aug 05
NHK will reduce the number of its satellite television channels from the current four to two. The public broadcaster announced Tuesday it also plans to consolidate its two AM radio channels into one. (Japan Times)
Aug 05
The government said Tuesday it has been allowing the entry of foreign nationals teaching at international schools and their families as exceptions to the travel ban imposed to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus. (Japan Times)
Aug 04
The Ministry of Justice will update the English translations of Japan's business-related laws and regulations. (Nikkei)
Aug 04
Students in Japan are having a much shorter summer break this year to make up for classes that were cancelled in the spring due to the coronavirus pandemic. (NHK)
Aug 03
Data compiled by Japan's welfare ministry shows the proportion of male workers who took paternity leave in 2019 edged up from the previous year but still remained low. (NHK)
Aug 02
The shocking revelations contained in the report "I Was Hit So Many Times I Can't Count," released by Human Rights Watch on July 20 exposing the abuse of child athletes in Japan, came as no surprise to those of us close to the world of Japanese sports administration. (Nikkei)
Aug 02
Popular YouTube channel and website The Black Experience Japan features interviews with dozens of black residents of Japan. (globalvoices.org)