hello there. welcome to "newsline." it is friday august 12th, 8:00 a.m. in tokyo. i'm catherine kobayashi. in response to last month's high speed train crash in china, the country's rail authorities will inspect one train model that's been involved in a string of problems. china's news agency said that the government will carry out full checks on the model that
has suffered a series of problems. the model runs on the line between beijing and shanghai that opened in june. as a result, daily is fs services on the route will be diminished by 18%. also the maximum speed will be cut from 350 to 300 kilometers per hour. the top speed will also be reduced from 250 to 200 kilometers per hour on other lines. due to these changes, the ministry will alter train schedules starting tuesday. the chinese government said on wednesday that it will freeze approval of high speed railway construction for the time being. japan and china have agreed to work closely together after the recent talks between north korea and the united states aimed at resuming the stalled six party talks on the north's nuclear program. on thursday the japanese foreign
ministry bureau chief met with china's special envoy to the six party talks. >> translator: japan and china have agreed to talk seriously and the approved dialogue. >> but he made no mention of north korea's uranium enrichment program or japan's specific approach to restarting the six party talks. china's special envoy wu expressed hope for the resumption of the six party talks. >> translator: china welcomes dialogue between china japan and north korea. we hope it moves forward. the governoring democratic party of japan has agreed to
accept a bill to promote renewable energy. the bill would compel power utilities to buy solar, wind and other powers at fixed prices for certain periods. the dpg held talks with the liberal democratic party and the new komeito party. the dbg accepted proposals from the two opposition parties. and introducing measures to curtail the burden on large scale users. the chiefs of the three parties agreed to revise the bill and have it enacted as quickly as possible. the pass of the bill is one sited by naoto kan for his resignation.
thursday marked exactly five months since the march 11th earthquake and tsunami. memorial ceremonies were held across the quake-hit region to commemorate the victims. at a retirement home in higashi city, 50 residents and 11 staffers were killed. despite the fact the facility is scheduled to be demolished, surviving staffers continue to remove mud and debris. [ bell rings [ ] >> at 2:46 p.m., the staff stopped working and held a moment of silence at an alter. >> translator: i think five months have passed so quickly.
the disasters were a nightmare. the situation is so sad. and this quiet punctuates it. >> in miyako city, about 2,400 lanterns were lit to pray for the victims. in the district of the city many homes were swept away when the tsunami overwhelmed a dike. the lanterns were positioned on the partially damaged dike and the parts of the nearby temple.
>> the earthquake and tsunami killed nearly 15,700 people and 4,700 are missing. the survivors are still struggling to get their lives back to normal. more than 87,000 people have lost their homes due to the disaster or have been forced to evacuate because of the crisis at the fukushima daiichi nuclear plant. nearly 90% of the planned temporary housing units remain completed but some remain vacant because of their location. many have lost their jobs but there have only been about 86,000 job offers. over 700 households in these prefectures are on welfare. the labor ministry hopes to step up for the households to give them priority in hires. five months have passed since the disaster, but people in the disaster areas are still
facing many difficulties. recently a group of journalists from the united states took part in a tour to the disaster-hit areas to see for themselves how people are coping. >> reporter: all four reporters had visited japan before, but this was the first time they had been there since the march 11th disaster. they travel to miyagi prefecture that suffered massive damage from the tsunami. steven nessen is a journalist in new york. he first got to know japan last year when he visited okinawa to report on the u.s. military bases there. >> how are the people who live here affected and what is day to
day life for them? it's stuff i'd like to know. >> reporter: the journalists met with some students at an elementary school. their local school was severely damaged by the tsunami. so they are now attending classes at another school nearby. before leaving for japan, they called on american elementary school children to write messages of encouragement. they received around 7,000 letters from all across the united states and brought many of these messages with them. they handed out the letters to each of the children. >> translator: i'm happy to know that people in america have been thinking of us. >> translator: i'd like to send a reply thanking them and saying we're doing our best to stay
strong. >> reporter: the next day the journalists visited ishinomaki where nearly 6,000 people died or are still listed as missing. they took photos of the city streets which are still filled with debris. they also visited an elementary school which is being used as an emergency shelter for more than 180 people. they wanted to talk to the survivors to find out how they are coping. >> if you take general shots from here, that's fine. >> reporter: one of the survivors invited them to enter
her living space. takahashi has been living on her own in the shelter ever since the tsunami. at one school in ishinomaki, many elementary school children died because they were not instructed to flee to higher ground immediately after the quake. and they stayed in the school grounds. >> translator: we have never experienced such a huge tsunami. we underestimated its dangers. i want children to be taught that after quake occurs, they must immediately move to a safe place. >> translator: i want everyone to treat this disaster as an issue that concerns them, not something that happened to other people. i want this story to be passed down and never forgotten. >> reporter: nessen could see
the survivors are gradually coming to terms with what happened. he was touched by their spirit and intends to report on everything he witnessed after getting back home. >> it seems like they -- physically i can see that the land has been devastated and the homes have been devastated. but the spirits have not quite been devastated. they seem very strong. so that's very nice to see. >> reporter: since the march 11st disaster, there's a growing consensus that the japanese government has failed in its reconstruction efforts in some places. but what american journalists found when they came here is that survivors aren't letting that stop them from rebuilding their lives.
nhk world, miyagi prefecture. >> five months after japan's tsunami and earthquake triggered a crisis, the struggle to get the fukushima daiichi plant under control is far from over. workers are trying to get the system that decontaminates water working at full capacity. tokyo electric power company has resumed the cooling systems for spent fuel storage pools at four of its reactors. it fixed a problem at the number one unit on wednesday. tepco has been cooling three reactors since late june by cleaning up highly radioactive water then recirculating it. the safety agency says the temperatures of the reactors have been relatively stable at around 100 degrees celsius. the lowers the risk of another hydrogen explosion. but the filtration equipment has been plagued with problems.
the operation has been repeatedly suspended slowing down the process. tepco is reducing the amount of water it injects to reduce the buildup of contaminated liquid. that means its plan could be delayed. the accident at fukushima daiichi isn't getting in the way of a deal between japan and vietnam to build two new nuclear reactors in the country. state secretary for foreign affairs takahashi met with vietnamese prime minister in hanoi on thursday. he said japan will take what it learns from the fukushima daiichi accident and use it to provide assistance with higher safety standards than ever before. hai said he wants the agreement to stay in place. the country signed the deal last october. the two reactors are scheduled
to start operating in 2021. vietnam plans to build a total of 14 nuclear reactors by 2030 to meet its growing demand for electricity. "newsline" is the place to turn to for the latest on japan post-march 11th. we have two segments offering two unique perspectives on the fallout from the earthquake and tsunami. "nuclear watch" brings you insight and information on the impact of the fukushima daiichi crisis. and "the road ahead" examines japan's efforts to recover and rebuild. don't miss "nuclear watch" and "the road ahead" on "newsline. the health and fitness industry for children in south korea is booming. house clinics and clubs for kids have been sprouting around the country. some parents believe a slim body and longer legs will make it easier for their children to get a job and attract a spouse. here's more.
>> reporter: the children seem to be just playing as they please. in fact, they are doing the exercises based on each child's preferences and physique. this children-only fitness club offers 30 types of programs categorized by age, school year, gender, and purpose. about 50% of the children enrolled are said to be overweight. 10-year-old yuan is on a mission. he joins this club a year ago hoping to use weight. he has been overweight for most of his life. here at the fitness club he plays one type of sport after another. he lost three kilograms in a month. >> translator: i've never been bored because i have choices
here. >> translator: first we take into account children's preferences. we help build muscles, enhance bone growth, and form a balanced physique. even big kids can lack basic physical strength. >> reporter: weight loss is not the only service in demand. this health clinic in seoul says it can make children taller. in south korea that claim gets attention from parents and kids alike. >> translator: i want to become tall. up to nearly 1.7 meters. tall people look better. >> translator: taller than average people seem to have more upward social mobility and not feel shy around people. so i want my child to be tall. >> reporter: the clinic develops a program for each child. it starts with a detailed checkup to set a target height and pace of growth. results are used to pinpoint any problems.
based on this analysis, a course of exercise and treatment is drawn up. it includes exercises designed to spur growth hormone. a treatment to stimulate growth points in the lower back and legs and training to correct posture. the goal is to maximize height potential before adolescent bones stop growing. it costs about 200,000 yuan. and up to 700,000 yuan for the exercises and treatments. despite the high cost, the clinic now has 15 branchs in south korea. >> translator: socially speaking, taller people get better treatment. so the growth control program is getting a lot of attention. that's particularly because height can only be controlled during childhood.
>> reporter: controlling a child's growth and physique can be a costly business. some local governments are offering to help shoulder the financial burden. buechon city offers discount vouchers for consultations with specialists. children chosen for the program are sent to a local university or physical education center. exercises are supervised by professors specializing in physical education or public health. last year 300 children took the course. subsidies for children programs are offered by four regions and other local governments are planning to follow suit. >> translator: because the reaction is good, we'll expand the program in the coming years. so more children can use it.
>> reporter: increasing numbers of parents in this country are turning children's physical development programs into a growth industry. observers say that leaves plenty of room for program operators to expand. nhk world. >> interesting there. time to take on some of the stories we've gathered from broadcasters around asia. we begin with this item sent by mkot thailand. thailand's new prime minister held her first cabinet meeting. she endorsed her team the previous day. during the meeting, participants went over regulations for ministers and reviewed reports from government agencies. the prime minister stressed she would follow the law. she also spoke about the criticism over choice of
ministers. she asked the public to give them a chance to perform saying they're determined to serve the country. malaysia's customs department announced wednesday it recovered stolen honda city cars at the port of haifa the cars were bound for cyprus. thieves stole the vehicles in june and smuggled them out of malaysia before the end of that month. the customs department ordered them to bring the ships back. a 35-year-old suspect has been detained. if convicted he faces a fine or five-year jail term for making a false declaration. china's government wants u.s. energy giant conoco phillips to apologize for delaying the oil spills. they're now effecting the country's northeast coastal
areas. soon after the spills, the state oceanic administration asked for the cleanup to be finished by august 7th. the company failed to meet that deadline. the oil has been spreading to beaches. it's been blamed for losses in the local tourism and aquatic farming industries. let's now take a look at the market figures.
hello there. time now for your weather update. plenty of sunshine in japan. today just a couple of showers to watch out for in the west in the afternoon. but that should be about it. to the south we do have a tropical depression that could possibly become a tropical storm. but it doesn't look like it's going to be make -- effecting any lands masses. meanwhile, significant rain developing in eastern china. that starts to move into the korean peninsula as well. during the day we could potentially see up to 100 millimeters around shanghai and
over the next couple days as well. you can see that rain spreading across the korean peninsula looking at the threat for landslides as well as flooding rains. here we could see more than 200 millimeters. inland china will stay mostly dry for western sections dealing with heat here. 39 degrees in chongqing. 33 in shanghai. tokyo rising to 34 degrees. indeed much of japan will be contending with that high heat and humidity once again. many areas reaching the mid-30s. 35 in fukushima. now as for the americas, storms continue to rumble away in eastern canada. but that system is finally going to be weakening after tonight. as for the midsections of the u.s., also looking quite stormy throughout the night. rain will slowly start to weaken off at the end of central
canada. but for the central plains of the u.s., will remain quite stormy. especially for nebraska, the dakotas looking at damaging winds and large hail and torrential downpours. out towards the east and over towards the west, two high pressure systems in control. it will be fairly pleasant as well as dry. we could use more rain down in the south. but again contending with that heat and dry weather. 38 in houston. up towards the northeast, 29 in new york with plenty of sunshine. very warm in toronto, 28 degrees. as for europe we've got the frontal system with strong winds as well as a couple of strong thunderstorms to watch out. for western turkey as well as bulgaria. and over towards the north we've got this long frontal system across the area. it looks like over the next few days we'll continue to see
systems move on in. one after another. strong winds to contend with. especially across the northern end of the uk here. for southern europe it will stay essentially dry. very pleasant and summery out here. pockets of heavy shower showing up in the afternoon. but madrid hotting up today. 28 for your high. and going to be warm in vienna as well. and things warm towards the east as well. here is your extended forecast now.
in response so last month's high speed train crash in china, the country's rail authorities will inspect one train model that's been involved in a string of problems. china's agency said on thursday that the government will carry out full scale checks and repairs on the crh-3db model. as a result daily services on the route will be reduced by 25%. china's railway ministry said the speed will be cut from 350 to 300 kilometers per hour on the line between beijing and tianjin. the top speed will also be reduced from 250 to 200 kilometers per hour on other lines. they will alter schedules starting tuesday. the chinese government said wednesday it will freeze approval of a high speed railway