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Kyodo News Digest: Aug. 6, 2023

Women dance during the traditional Yamagata Hanagasa Festival on Aug. 5, 2023, in Yamagata, northeastern Japan. (Kyodo) ==Kyodo

The following is the latest list of selected news summaries by Kyodo News.


Hiroshima marks atomic bombing’s 78th anniv. after hosting G-7 summit

HIROSHIMA – Hiroshima marked the 78th anniversary of the city’s atomic bombing by the United States on Sunday after its nuclear legacy took center stage when the western Japan city hosted the summit of the Group of Seven major economies in May.

In the annual Peace Declaration delivered at the ceremony in the Peace Memorial Park, Mayor Kazumi Matsui hailed the G-7 leaders’ historic visit to the park and its atomic bomb museum as proof that the “spirit” of Hiroshima had reached them, but also urged policymakers to abandon the idea that nuclear weapons deter war.


40 C heat logged in Japan for 1st time this summer as nation swelters

TOKYO – Japan experienced its first 40 C day this season, with the mercury hitting the scorching level in the northeastern region, according to the weather agency.

Among the 914 observation points nationwide, temperatures had risen to 35 C or above at about 300 locations, with Date in Fukushima Prefecture logging 40.0 C around 2 p.m., the Japan Meteorological Agency said.


Japanese life expectancy falls in 2022 for 2nd straight yr

TOKYO – The average life expectancy of Japanese people declined in 2022 for the second straight year, affected significantly by the coronavirus pandemic, according to the health ministry.

The average life span for women was 87.09 years old, down by 0.49 of a year, and that of men fell 0.42 to 81.05 years, with over 47,000 people dying due to the virus, showed recent data by the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare.


Japan traffic accident deaths up in Jan.-June for 1st rise in 10 yrs

TOKYO – The number of traffic accident deaths in Japan rose 2.1 percent to 1,182 in the first half of 2023 from a year earlier, marking the first increase in 10 years for a January-June period, according to recent police data.

The National Police Agency attributed the increase to fewer deaths when restrictions on movement were in place during the pandemic and the subsequent return to normal when curbs were lifted.


Rugby: 14-man Brave Blossoms go down to Fiji

TOKYO – Japan will leave these shores for the Rugby World Cup on the back of another loss after they were beaten 35-12 by Fiji in the Pacific Nations Series at a sold-out Prince Chichibu Memorial Rugby Ground on Saturday night.

With just a game away to Italy before they kick off their Rugby World Cup campaign against Chile on Sept. 10 in Toulouse, France, the Brave Blossoms once again paid the penalty for indiscipline and poor tackle technique. Although, to their credit, they never gave up competing and showed glimpses of how dangerous they can be with ball in hand.


Baseball: Former Fighter Kondo delivers knockout punch for Hawks

KITAHIROSHIMA, Japan – Kensuke Kondo drove in five runs and hit a tie-breaking home run against his former club, powering the SoftBank Hawks to an 11-6 Pacific League win Saturday over the Nippon Ham Fighters.

Kondo, who signed with SoftBank as a free agent in the offseason, put the visitors in front with a first-inning RBI single off Japan World Baseball Classic teammate Hiromi Ito and narrowed the Fighters’ lead to two with a two-run fifth-inning double at Es Con Field Hokkaido.


Football: Nagoya see off Niigata to put pressure on J1 leaders

TOKYO – Nagoya Grampus edged Albirex Niigata 1-0 in the J-League first division on Saturday, moving to within two points of leaders Vissel Kobe ahead of their weekend fixture.

Playing a “home” game at Tokyo’s National Stadium, Nagoya scored in the 14th minute through left wing-back Ryoya Morishita as Grampus legend and current Serbia manager Dragan Stojkovic, who coached the club to their only J1 title in 2010, watched from among the crowd of 57,058.


Boxing: Kuroki beats Alarcon to unify WBA, WBO atomweight belts

KOBE – Japan’s Yuko Kuroki secured the WBA and WBO atomweight belts via majority decision against Mexico’s Montserrat Alarcon in their women’s boxing world title unification bout Saturday.

With her WBO crown on the line for the second time, the 32-year-old Kuroki claimed Alarcon’s WBA title after the judges at Kobe Central Gymnasium scored the bout 96-94, 96-94, 95-95 in the Japanese fighter’s favor.


Video: Yamagata Hanagasa Festival in northeastern Japan

Read More:Kyodo News Digest: Aug. 6, 2023