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Kyodo Top12 News (21:00)
[August 03, 2014]

Kyodo Top12 News (21:00)

(Japan Economic Newswire Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) ---------- Strong quake hits southwestern China, 24 people killed BEIJING - A powerful earthquake rocked southwestern China's Yunnan Province on Sunday, toppling houses, wrecking communications and power lines, and leaving at least 24 people dead, an official Yunnan website said. The earthquake, with a magnitude of 6.5 struck Ludian county of Zhaotong city at 4:30 p.m. The official Xinhua News Agency said the earthquake toppled and cracked many buildings and affected electricity and telecommunications services. Civil affairs authorities are sending 2,000 tents and 3,000 folding beds for people left homeless by the earthquake, Xinhua said. Zhaotong is about 300 kilometers from the provincial capital Kunming.

---------- 84% view collective self-defense explanation as insufficient: poll TOKYO - A Kyodo News survey showed Sunday that 84.1 percent of respondents believe the government has yet to provide a sufficient explanation regarding the Cabinet's recent decision to allow Japan to exercise the right to collective self-defense. In the nationwide telephone survey conducted Saturday and Sunday, 12.7 percent said the government has provided a sufficient explanation regarding the approval for exercising the right. In the survey, 60.2 percent said they oppose exercising the right to collective self-defense, which would allow Japan to come to the defense of allies under armed attack, up 5.8 percentage points from the July survey, while 31.3 percent expressed support, down 3.3 points. The approval rating for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's Cabinet rose 2.0 points from the previous survey to 49.8 percent.

---------- Abe again calls for talks with China's Xi during Nov. APEC meeting SAO PAULO - Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Saturday reiterated his desire to meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping on the sidelines of Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum summit talks in Beijing in November. "I hope to have a Japan-China summit meeting during the APEC forum in November," Abe said at a press conference in Sao Paulo when asked about the strained relations between the two Asian neighbors. "Japan and China should talk because we have issues to solve," he said. "My door is always open for dialogue, and I would like China to have the same attitude." Since assuming the premiership for the second time in December 2012, Abe has been unable to hold one-on-one talks with Xi as the two countries remain at odds over territory and perceptions of history.

---------- 96 people killed in Xinjiang ethnic riots in late July: official report BEIJING - Ninety-six people were killed in what Chinese authorities called a "premeditated terror attack" in China's far western region of Xinjiang in late July, according to a Xinjiang official report. The official Xinjiang website Tianshan Net said 35 Han Chinese and two ethnic Uyghur residents were killed and 13 people were injured, putting the death toll among the "mobs" at 59. The casualty figures were reported at a meeting of Xinjiang regional officials on Saturday, the report said. According to the official Xinhua News Agency, the clashes first occurred in Elixku, a township in Kashgar Prefecture, in the early hours of July 28. A gang armed with knives attacked a police station and government offices in Elixku and some of them moved on to the nearby Huangdi Township, attacking civilians and smashing vehicles as they passed, Xinhua said.

---------- Death toll from explosion at Taiwan-owned factory in China rises to 71 SHANGHAI - The death toll from an explosion at a Taiwan-owned auto parts factory in the city of Kunshan in eastern China has risen to 71 with 186 people injured, city government officials said Sunday. The blast occurred Saturday morning inside a wheel hub polishing workshop of Kunshan Zhongrong Metal Products Co. Police authorities have detained senior company executives for questioning. The company makes wheels for General Motors Co. and other U.S. carmakers, according to local media. The explosion was apparently caused by a fire that ignited stockpiles of high-density powder in the workshop.

---------- Petrochemical firm accused of causing Taiwan gas explosions TAIPEI - While investigators continued Sunday to collect evidence of what caused massive explosions in Taiwan's southern city of Kaohsiung late Thursday to early Friday, city officials have pointed the finger at a petrochemical firm for the tragedy that left 28 people dead and 302 injured. A series of powerful blasts, the first recorded at 11:59 p.m. on Thursday, ripped through 6 kilometers of roads in the Cianjhen and Lingya districts, smashing motor vehicles and badly damaging shops and houses. The Kaohsiung District Prosecutors Office has interviewed people from the petrochemical company LCY Chemical Corp. and its supplier China General Terminal & Distribution Corp. City officials accused LCY of failing to notify authorities of a gas leakage in one of its propylene pipelines and said the blasts were probably caused by propylene gas that exploded and caught fire.

---------- Modi visits Nepal to relaunch top-level bilateral engagement KATHMANDU - Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived in Kathmandu on Sunday for a two-day official visit. The visit, the first by an Indian premier in 17 years, is expected to reinvigorate top-level political engagements between the two neighbors that were seen as weak during Manmohan Singh's prime ministership, when New Delhi seemed content to deal with Nepal at the bureaucratic level. Modi is scheduled to hold talks with Koirala and address Nepal's parliament later Sunday. "I hope my visit will open a new chapter in India-Nepal relations, characterized by more frequent political engagement and closer cooperation across the full spectrum of our extraordinarily broad-based relations, which will serve as a model and catalyst for South Asian partnership for prosperity," Modi said in a pre-departure statement.

---------- Japan set to create space force within SDF in 5 years' time TOKYO - Japan plans to create a space monitoring force within its Self-Defense Forces by around 2019, with the Defense Ministry having already informed the United States, a source close to Japan-U.S. relations said Saturday. Initially, the force will be tasked with monitoring dangerous debris floating in Earth's orbit and protecting satellites from collisions with such debris, the source said. The Defense Ministry has altered its strategy on the use of space to include the development of such an observatory force, following the 2008 enactment of a law revising the principles for Japan's nonmilitary activities in space.

---------- Baseball: Tanaka plays hero as Carp sink Giants TOKYO - Kosuke Tanaka broke a 2-2 tie with an RBI single as the Hiroshima Carp scored six runs in the sixth inning in a 7-2 come-from-behind victory over the Yomiuri Giants on Sunday afternoon. Hiroshima's Yuya Fukui (2-1) allowed two runs on five hits and two walks over seven innings. The right-hander, who went the distance in his last start, struck out one and hit a batter to earn the win as the third-place Carp moved to within 2-1/2 games of the Central League-leading Giants.

---------- Baseball: Wada fails to grab 2nd win as Cubs lose late to Dodgers LOS ANGELES - Japan's Tsuyoshi Wada failed to earn his second straight win for the Chicago Cubs on Saturday in a 5-2, 12-inning walk-off loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers. Wada, who earned his first big league victory in his previous start, left the game trailing 2-1, but Chicago tied it in the seventh and Hanley Ramirez finished it in the 12th with a three-run homer that moved the National League West-leading Dodgers 3-1/2 games in front of second-place San Francisco. Before a crowd of 53,354 at Dodger Stadium, Wada allowed two runs on six hits, two walks and two hit batsmen in 5-2/3 innings, while striking out six.

---------- Tennis: Nara advances to final in Washington WASHINGTON - Japan's Kurumi Nara advanced to the Citi Open final after winning her semifinal over New Zealand's Marina Erakovic on Saturday. Nara, ranked 40th in the world, was wiped out in the first set but came back to beat the 82nd-ranked New Zealander 0-6, 6-4, 6-4 to reach her second final of the year. In the final, the 22-year-old Nara will face sixth seed Svetlana Kuznetsova, who won an all-Russia semifinal against second seed Ekaterina Makarova 6-3, 6-2. It will be the first career meeting between Nara and the 26th-ranked Kuznetsova.

---------- Weather forecast for key cities in Japan TOKYO - Weather forecast for Monday: Tokyo=fair, occasionally cloudy; Osaka=cloudy, occasional rain; Nagoya=cloudy; Sapporo=cloudy, then rain; Sendai=fair, occasionally cloudy; Niigata=fair, occasionally cloudy; Hiroshima=cloudy, occasional rain; Takamatsu=rain; Fukuoka=rain; Naha=fair, occasional rain.

(c) 2014 Kyodo News

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