A 114-year-old Japanese woman born the same year that radium was discovered was recognized as the world’s oldest woman by Guinness World Records on Wednesday.
Misao Okawa, who was born to a clothing merchant in 1898 and now lives in the western city of Osaka, received a certificate acknowledging her status and said she was pleased.
“Given everything, it’s pretty good,” she told a gathering at the nursing home where she resides.
North Korea successfully launched a rocket on Wednesday, boosting the credentials of its new leader and stepping up the threat the isolated and impoverished state poses to opponents.
The rocket, which North Korea says put a weather satellite into orbit, has been labeled by the United States, South Korea and Japan as a test of technology that could one day deliver a nuclear warhead capable of hitting targets as far away as the continental United States.
“The satellite has entered the planned orbit,” a North Korean television news reader clad in traditional Korean garb announced, after which the station played patriotic songs with the lyrics “Chosun (Korea) does what it says”.
The rocket was launched just before 10 a.m. (0100 GMT), according to defense officials in South Korea and Japan, and was more successful than a rocket launched in April that flew for less than two minutes.
A scientist from Britain and a scientist from Japan were awarded the Nobel Prize for their discovery that adult stem cells can be transformed back into embryo-like stem cells that may regrow tissue in damage organs.
Here’s a look at Nobel Prize winners in the field of medicine for other countries dating back to 1901.
Japan on Tuesday flagged the Chinese army’s growing role in shaping the country’s foreign policy as a security risk, saying a sense of caution exists across East Asia about Beijing’s apparent military expansion in the region.
In its annual defense white paper, Tokyo said some believe that relations between the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) and the Communist Party leadership were “getting complex” and said this was a matter of concern.
There is a possibility that the degree of military influence on foreign policy decisions has been changing, the paper said, without elaborating.
“This situation calls for attention as a risk management issue,” it added.
More than 100,000 anti-nuclear protesters marched through central Tokyo on Monday to voice their opposition to atomic power, racheting up the pressure on under fire Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda.
On the hottest day of the year, protesters forsook their air-conditioned homes to say the country does not need nuclear energy after last year’s Fukushima disaster raised concerns about the safety of atomic power.
It was the biggest demonstration since Noda said last month Japan needed to restart reactors shut down for safety checks to avoid electricity shortages that might hit the economy.
“Today temperatures reached record high levels,” Noda told Japanese television, as the city sweltered in 36.6-degree Celsius. “We must ask ourselves whether we can really make do without nuclear power.”
A revision to Japan’s Animal Protection Law, due to come into force on June 1, will slap a curfew on the public display of cats and dogs, forcing cat cafes to shut up shop at 8 p.m.
“Everybody knows cats are really happy in the evening, with their big, cute eyes. So I just can’t understand why the people at the top are ignoring this. It’s really strange.”
Cat cafes have long been popular, catering to the many cat lovers who can’t keep the animals at home because of strict housing regulations that forbid pets in many apartments.
Visitors to Kawase’s cafe pay about 1,000 yen ($12) an hour to play with any of her 24 cats, who dart around the room chasing toys or sleep in baskets set on tables. Drinks are priced from around 300 yen each.
Read more: Japanese cat lovers snarl at new law
Tsunami victims look through albums for their photographs, which were washed away by the March 11, 2011 earthquake and tsunami, at an assembly house in temporary compounds in Ofunato, Iwate prefecture, February 20, 2012.
The massive March 11 tsunami that levelled buildings and flattened towns along a wide swathe of northern Japan, including Ofunato, also took a more subtle toll, with hundreds of thousands of photographs lost to the churning waters. Picture taken February 20, 2012. [REUTERS/Toru Hanai]
Have you seen this little girl?
A Reuters photographer is trying to track down a young survivor of the Japan earthquake and tsunami nearly one year after the March 11 tragedy.
“This picture was taken in Koriyama Sports Complex around midnight on March 12th, 2011,” photographer Kim Kyung-Hoon writes. “I would be very grateful if anyone reading this article could give me any information about her.”
Kyung-Hoon writes: “In a rush to file the picture, I left the scene in a hurry without asking for her personal information such as name, age and where she came from. Asking questions at such a time of confusion would not have resulted in answers from the stunned evacuees; they didn’t even seem to be able to talk.”
If you know anything about this young survivor, please email email@example.com.
Read more: Have you seen this Fukushima child?