Italian Cruise Ship in Japan has 48 Coronavirus Cases
Nearly 50 crew members on an Italian cruise ship docked for repairs in Japan's Nagasaki have tested positive for the new coronavirus, raising concern about the strain on the city's hospitals if conditions worsen for those infected. Results on Thursday showed 14 more aboard, all either cooks or those serving food, were infected with the virus, an official in Nagasaki prefecture said. One patient who had been taken to hospital previously was now in serious condition and on a ventilator, he told a live-streamed news conference.
Costa Cruise Ship Docked in Japan Grapples with Coronavirus Cluster
More than 30 crew members on an Italian cruise ship docked for repairs in Japan's Nagasaki prefecture have tested positive for the new coronavirus, raising concern about the impact on the local community.The cluster of infections found on board the Costa Atlantica follows the case of the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Yokohama two months ago, where more than 700 were found to be infected, although this time only crew members were on board.The Costa Cruises-operated ship was taken into a shipyard in Nagasaki city…
Japanese Doctor Blasts Ship Quarantine
A Japanese infectious disease specialist has castigated his government's handling of quarantine on a coronavirus-stricken cruise ship, saying it was run by "bureaucrats" who stoked the crisis by failing to follow basic protocols.Kentaro Iwata of Kobe University Hospital took his criticism to YouTube after he spent a day as a volunteer doctor on the Diamond Princess. The luxury liner has become an incubator for the novel coronavirus, with more than 600 people now infected.The ship docked in Yokohama on Feb. 3. Japan has been criticized for its handling of the quarantine, including by the U.S.
Japan Sending Warship, Aircraft to Middle East
Japan will send a warship and patrol planes to protect Japanese ships in the Middle East as the situation in the region, from which it sources nearly 90% of its crude oil imports, remains volatile, Japan's top government spokesman said on Friday.Under the plan approved by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's cabinet, a helicopter-equipped destroyer and two P-3C patrol planes will be dispatched for information-gathering aimed at ensuring safe passage for Japanese vessels through the region.If there are any emergencies…
Japan Won't Join US-Led Maritime Coalition in Gulf
Japan will not join a U.S.-led security mission to protect merchant vessels passing through key Middle Eastern waterways, but will consider deploying its naval force independently, the Yomiuri newspaper reported on Tuesday.Though the United States is Japan's most important ally, Tokyo has fostered economic ties with Iran, and Japanese firms had been major buyers of Iranian oil until U.S. sanctions forced them to find other suppliers.Citing unidentified government sources, the…
Japan: No Maritime Force Proposal Discussions
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and U.S. Defense Secretary Mark Esper did not have any particular exchange on the U.S.-proposed maritime coalition in the Middle East, Japan's top government spokesman said on Wednesday.Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said that the premier and Esper confirmed the two nations would work on peace and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific region as well as further strengthen the alliance between Japan and the United States.Suga also met Esper separately and the two didn't discuss the maritime coalition in the Middle East, either. (Reporting by Kaori Kaneko;
Japan Refuses to Join U.S. Middle East Coalition
Japan will not send warships to join a U.S.-led maritime force to guard oil tankers in the Strait of Hormuz fearing a military response from Iran, but it may send patrol aircraft, said the Mainichi newspaper, citing unidentified government sources.But Japan may send warships independently to protect Japanese ships in the world's most important oil artery, the newspaper said on Friday."We are closely monitoring the situation and continue to collect information while working closely with the United States and other countries…
Japanese, South Korean Trawlers Collide in Sea of Japan, 13 Rescued
At this stage, the rescue operation is being taken care of by private fishing vessels, and our patrol boats have already arrived in the area. The damage to the Japanese fishing boat is minor and there has been no casualities.A South Korean trawler and a Japanese fishing boat collided in the Sea of Japan on Thursday (November 15) about 330 km (205 miles) northeast of an island claimed by both countries, officials said.Part of the 48-tonne South Korean trawler was submerged after the collision, which occurred at 9:38 a.m. local time (0038 GMT), a South Korean Coast Guard official said. All 13 sailors aboard the South Korean boat were rescued…
No Waiver for Japan on Iran Sanctions
Japan said on Thursday it had not yet been granted a waiver from a U.S. plan to reimpose sanctions aimed at cutting Iran out of international markets, while the top two customers for Iranian oil, China and India, were awaiting word on possible exemptions.The United States has said it is considering waivers on sanctions for countries that are reducing their imports of Iranian oil. The renewed U.S. sanctions on Iran are set to come into effect on Nov. 4."Japan-U.S. talks have been conducted four times so far on U.S.
East China Sea Dispute: Japan Protests China Drilling Vessel
Japan has protested to China for allowing a gas drilling vessel to operate in disputed waters in the East China Sea, the government said on Friday.
Japan Plans Retaliatory Tariffs Against US
Japan is considering tariffs on U.S. exports worth $409 million in retaliation against steel and aluminium import tariffs imposed by President Donald Trump, media reported on Thursday.Such a move would signal Tokyo is ready to go beyond backdoor talks and pleas for exemptions from the U.S. duties.It would also add to a growing rift that Trump's "America First" trade policies is creating among major economies, which threatens to slow global trade and business activity.Japan is the only major U.S. ally that did not receive exemptions from Trump's tariff decision.
Oil From Sunken Iranian Tanker May Have Reached Japan
Clumps of oil have washed up on the shores of southern Japan and there are fears they may be leaking from an Iranian crude tanker than sank in the world's worst such disaster in decades, the Japanese Coast Guard said on Friday. Black clumps have reached the shores of the island of Amami-Oshima, a coast guard official told Reuters by phone. Authorities are checking to see if it is from the Sanchi (IMO:9356608) tanker that sank in the East China Sea last month, after being alerted to its presence by the public.
Chinese Sub near Disputed Islands Stokes Tension with Japan
Japan’s defense minister criticized China on Monday for sailing an advanced stealthy nuclear submarine close to disputed islands claimed by Japan and China, saying the action had stoked tension. The submarine, which Japan detected in the East China Sea, was a 110 meter-long Shang-class vessel, which is able to dive deeper and for longer than older boats and is armed with torpedoes and anti-ship missiles, according to Japan’s Ministry of Defence. “Operating a submerged submarine close to another country’s territory goes against the norms of international rules…
An Hour Passed before Japan Authorities were Notified of Fitzgerald Collision
Nearly an hour elapsed before a Philippine-flagged container ship reported a collision with a U.S. warship, the Japanese coastguard said on Monday, as investigations began into the accident in which seven U.S. sailors were killed. The U.S. Navy confirmed that all seven missing sailors on the USS Fitzgerald were found dead in flooded berthing compartments after the destroyer's collision with the container ship off Japan early on Saturday. The Fitzgerald and a Philippine-flagged container ship collided south of Tokyo Bay early on Saturday. The cause of the collision is not known. Multiple U.S.
Japan Protests over Signs of Renewed Chinese Gas Exploration
Japan has protested to China over signs it is pressing ahead with maritime gas exploration in the East China Sea despite Tokyo's repeated requests to stop, Japan's top government spokesman said on Wednesday. The exploration platforms are on the Chinese side of the median line between the two countries, but Japan accuses China of ignoring a 2008 agreement to maintain cooperation on resources development in an area where no official border has been drawn. China said in July it had every right to drill in the East China Sea close to waters disputed with Japan, adding that it did not recognise the "unilateral" Japanese median line setting a boundary between the two.
Japan Urges China Not to Escalate Sea Tension
Japan said on Monday it would respond firmly after Chinese government vessels intruded into what Japan considers its territorial waters near disputed islands in the East China Sea 14 times at the weekend. Ties between China and Japan, the world's second and third largest economies, have for years been plagued by a dispute over the islands that Japan controls, and the waters around them. The flurry of Chinese incursions into the waters follows a period of sustained pressure on China about its activities in the South China Sea, and a Chinese criticism of what it saw as Japanese interference in that dispute. Chinese activity near the disputed East China Sea islands…
China Navy Patrols Heighten Tensions with Japan
Japan said on Tuesday it has told China that any foreign naval vessel that enters Japanese waters for reasons other than "innocent passage" will be told to leave by a Japanese naval patrol, signalling a potential escalation in a long-running dispute. Japan had informed China of its decision in November, after Chinese navy ships sailed near disputed isles in the East China Sea known as the Senkaku in Japan and the Diaoyu in China, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told a news conference. Japan's government, Suga said, had approved the course of action last May. "If a foreign naval vessel transits our waters for (purposes) other than 'innocent passage', we will order a sea patrol and take the step of having the Self-Defense Force unit order withdrawal," Suga told a news conference.
Japan to Bid on Aussie Sub Replacement Contract
Japan will join competitive bidding to sell Australia a fleet of stealth submarines, the government said on Monday, a move expected to require Tokyo to supply Canberra with classified data. The development comes as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe moves to strengthen security ties with ally the United States and some countries in the region including Australia in the face of China's rapid military modernisation and maritime expansion. "We have decided to participate" in the bidding to replace Australia's ageing fleet, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told a regular news conference. The "competitive assessment" will see Germany's ThyssenKrupp…
Oil Tanker Explodes off Japan; Captain Missing
An explosion on oil tanker Shoko Maru off the coast of Japan set the vessel ablaze, severely injuring four crew while the captain remains missing, several sources reported. The blast occurred this morning while the 998-ton tanker was anchored roughly 3 miles off western Japan's port of Himeji, the Japanese coast guard said. Seven of the vessel’s eight crewmembers have been recovered and taken to the nearby hospitals, but the ship’s captain remains missing. Ships and aircraft were commissioned to fight the fire, which created a large hole in the vessel’s port side, causing it to tilt. Shoko Maru unloaded its fuel oil last Friday, government spokesman Yoshihide Suga told Reuters, minimizing fears of major environmental impacts. The vessel is owned by Shoho Shopping Co.