i'm gene otani in tokyo. here's a look at some of the stories we're following this hour. high hopes dashed at the u.n. when the u.s. and iranian presidents fail to meet, but their foreign ministers are scheduled to talk for the first time in six years. the number of dead from an earthquake in pakistan rises. as damage to the communications network slows the rescue effort.
japanese officials are shoring up their computer defenses as hackers go after top secrets. people who hoped to see the presidents of the u.s. and iran meet at the u.n. general assembly this week have been disappointed. the much-talked about encounter between president obama and rouhani failed to materialize. however, the two countries are maintaining their momentum. their foreign ministers are due to meet on thursday for the first time in six years. a high-ranking u.s. official has revealed the u.s. tried to arrange a meeting between obama and rouhani. it would have been the first presidential encounter since the severing of diplomatic ties more than 30 years ago. but the source said iran declined on grounds it would be too complicated. iran's nuclear program continues to dominate the relationship. u.s. secretary of state john kerry and iranian foreign minister muhammad zarif are scheduled to attend
multinational talks on the issue. they'll be joined by five cabinet members of the u.n. security council and germany and u.s. and iran. at least 200 people are now confirmed dead from a powerful earthquake in pakistan. dhra dhirakaosal is following the story from bangkok. >> the area jolted an area of southern pakistan where rough terrain is making it hard for rescue workers to reach the people in need. the number of victims is expected to rise. nhk world reports. the magnitude 7.7 earthquake struck baluchistan province on tuesday afternoon. the quake was about 20 kilometers beneath the surface. the pakistani government sent
soldiers and helicopters to look for victims and deliver food and medical supplies. some of the most affected areas are isolated. rescuers have been unable to reach some remote villages. settlements are spread over a wide area with poor kecks. the extent of damage caused by the quake remains unclear. most houses in the region are constructed using mud bricks without steel reinforcements. past earthquakes destroyed walls, causing roofs to collapse. officials fear the number of victims from this disaster will likely continue to rise. masaki suda, nhk world, islamabad. thailand's flood preparedness is being tested as parts of the country are once again inundated with high
seasonal rains. at least nine people have died and 1.8 million are affected so far. two years ago the economy was devastated by the worst flooding in half a century. 27 provinces have been affected this season. parts of the province was up to one meter of water. it is home to a heritage site and industrial sites. the devastating flood of 2011 lasted for more than two months. more than 800 people were killed. check losses were estimated at $45 billion. the government has been taking steps like building flood walls around industrial parks to regain investor confidence. it also worked with japan to create a flood prediction system for the river basin. the prime minister on tuesday tried to reassure people that this year's flooding would not be a repeat of 2011. she assigned a special task force to monitor the situation.
the industry minister is set to visit industrial states on thursday to observe flood prevention measures. the meteorological department is forecasting more rains through sunday. >> the leader of cambodia's opposition is threatening further protests to try to force an independent inquiry into july's election. sam ramsey claims the election was rigged. on wednesday he suggested his party might call a nationwide strike to increase pressure on prime minister hunsen. the cambodian national rescue party doubled the seats in parliament according to the official result, but ramsey alleges widespread irregularities and denying his party from wing the majority. >> if the ruling party continues to ignore the winner of the c
cambodian people we will have to organize more than one demonstration. the lower house on thursday gave the prime minister another five-year term. he has governed the country for 28 years. his ruling cambodian people's party won 68 out of 123 seats in the election holding on to a majority, although much thinner than before. the opposition criticized him in a campaign for governing in an autocratic style. he rejected an opposition to demand that one of his members should be named president of the lower house. the the political standoff between the two sides shows no sign of ending any time soon. that wraps up our bulletin. i'm dhra dhirakaosal in bangkok.
♪ ♪ ♪ fishermen from fukushima, japan, have unloaded five tons of marine life they hauled in after resuming test catches. they suspended offshore trial fishing at the beginning of the month following regulations that highly radioactive water was leaking at the damaged nuclear plant. crews of 21 trawlers returned to a port in northern fukushima. officials say the trial catches resumed after tests showed marine life and seawater were safe. fishermen can only go after 16 types of seafood that were found to have no contamination or levels of radiation well within safety limits and they must drop their nets, traps or lines 50 kilometers from the plant at a
depth of at least 150 near thes. the crews unloaded 5.2 tons including giant octopus, spear squid and hairy crab. they're having it all tested for radio activity. if they're safe, they plan to ship the catch to local markets in tokyo and elsewhere. >> we don't want consumers to feel biased about our fish. we want to show they're just like any other fish caught anywhere else. >> the fukushima fisheries federation plans to start trial catches next month off the southern are the pa of the prefecture. fishing there hasn't resumed since the nuclear crisis began. some rice farmers in fukushima have struggled over the past two and a half years. now those from a town near the damaged plant are planning to ship their crop for the first time since the 2011 accident.
hirono is located within the 30-mile radius around the plant. local farmers voluntarily stopped growing rice for two years in response to worries about contamination. town officials began harvesting the crop last year on an experimental basis. they confirmed radiation levels were below the government safety standard, so they decided to allow farmers to plant again and take this year's harvest to market once it's tested. members of an agriculture cooperative in a neighboring town are checking rice fresh from the patties. >> translator: we will test every single bag. that way we will be able to market our rice, because people will know that it was thoroughly tested. >> only rice that meets a standard that is stricter than the government's safety limit will be shipped. now, farmers in hirono are waiting to see if consumers will buy their products. japanese prime minister
shinzo abe has reassured world leaders that leaks from the water from fukushima daiichi are under control. but marine scientists abroad say the operator, tepco, needs to do much more to improve things. nhk's world explains in today's nuclear watch. >> reporter: at last week's meeting of the oceanographic society of japan, experts offer a range of views the impact the fukushima accident will have on the ocean, but they were uncertain about how exactly to analyze the impact of radiation on the ocean. >> translator: tepco has collected data, but it is very difficult to understand. it's hard to find out what data tepco actually has and what we have found isn't helping us much with our research. >> reporter: the professor has been studying the impact of what's happening at the plant.
he thinks those in charge need to take a different approach. >> translator: it's crucial that people with expertise in different fields come together, people who understand the impacts on the land and the ocean. we should work to create a forum where we can exchange information. >> reporter: u.s. experts on the effects of radiation on the ocean are also weighing this. ken bissler has been studying the situation since shortly after the accident. he used the japanese government to determine a year ago that tainted water was leaking into the open ocean. he says tepco's lack of transparency, combined with the government's hands-off attitude has fostered international distrust, leading to overreaction. >> i think there's a lot of
overreaction by other countries, and the u.s., and as you said the fisheries in korea. we measure the water. we look at the fish, tens of thousands of fish samples so we know where the fish are highest and that's near fukushima and near the bottom of the ocean. and so if we avoid those fish, and those fisheries are closed, and no one is eating those fish in japan, no one is eating them in america or korea, that should be okay. >> reporter: he says japanese officials must seek solutions to the fukushima crisis in partnership with experts. >> there was a recent editorial in "nature" magazine and they called for abe, the prime minister, to come up with an international clean up and research effort. japan is doing more than any other country, they should
continue and the universities and scientists and tepco. but by having other groups confirm that, maybe we can slowly rebuild some confidence. >> reporter: japanese government leaders have decided to step in to oversee the problems at the plant. but experts in japan and abroad say authorities need to be more inclusive by sharing what they find out about the leaks. they say even then japanese leaders would have a long way to go before they regain trust. nhk world. ♪ ♪ government agencies and major corporations store increasing amounts of confidential information on their computer networks. some have found that makes them targets for a cyber attack. the breaches can come from just about anywhere. that's forced government officials in japan and elsewhere to shore up their defenses.
nhk world's karan natago reports. >> reporter: these technicians are playing armed conflict on a battlefield of servers and circuits. officials from the japanese defense ministry and four other government agencies have gathered in this facility. they're coordinating their response to a simulated cyber attack. >> translator: japan lags behind in dealing with issues of this kind. we need these drills to significantly boost our ability to respond to cyber attacks. >> reporter: precise figures are hard to come by. one government-affiliated body says the number of reported incidents jumped to 4,500 in june, more than double the figure in january. it says there have been more
attacks since a relationship between japan and china came under strain. hackers have targeted japanese government employees with an increasing number of e-mails with viruses attached. these technicians are simulating how they would respond to an attempt to penetrate their networks. participants are divided into teams of up to four people. they have to measure the scale of the attack, assess the damage, then find out where it's coming from. >> translator: we want to improve japan's information security and minimize leaks to show the world the safety of operating in japan. >> reporter: earlier this month, japanese officials met with their counterparts from the association of southeast asian nations. they agreed to develop a new system to warn about potential dangers.
government officials are learning more and more about the destructive potential from cyber attacks. they're defining strategies to neutralize new types of threats. they're hoping they can react and change as quickly as those who are attacking them. kuranga tago, nhk world, tokyo. the u.s. central bank has begun looking into allegations that its policy decision last week may have leaked before the announcement. the federal reserve surprised markets when it said last wednesday that it would not start tapering the bond buying program. u.s. broadcasters reported that heavy trading on chicago gold futures, for example, began right after the fed announcements which was unusually quick. there's growing speculation that the fed's policy decision may have leaked to some traders in chicago, and they might have
taken advantage of the information. the fed is examining media organizations about the possible leakage. japanese and chinese corporate executives say they will work together to improve relations between the two countries. the chairman of major chinese group cidic and ten other groups met in tokyo. he is upset by the recent strained relations. they said they want to improve the sector to improve ties. he said he will cooperate in helping turn the bilateral ties around. japanese business leaders of the japan-china economic association plan to send a delegation to china in november in a bid to improve the situation through business exchanges.
shareholders of the u.s. largest pork producer have confirmed a takeover by china's biggest meat firm. this will be the biggest acquisition of a u.s. company going to a chinese company. virginia-based smithfield foods will go to the international holdings for $4.7 billion. the plan won a majority vote at a meeting of shareholders. supporters say the deal will benefit the economy by boosting pork exports to china. those opposed are worried it will cause pork shortages back home and they're concerned about the possible revelation of trade secrets. a u.s. government committee that oversees deals approved the deal earlier this month. chinese government officials are set to launch pilot-free trade zones in shanghai as early as the end of september. they hope the initiative will
encourage investment and help maintain economic growth. the trial zones will be in four areas in shanghai where tax incentives are in place. the officials plan to ease regulations on the financial sector as well as foreign investment. internet access in china is limited and social networks like facebook are banned, but officials may lift restrictions for online activity. government officials are concerned about the economy. china is faced with slowing growth in trade volume and foreign investment. domestic production by major yap japanese carmakers fell in august for the next straight months. >> the total output stood at 1,042 unit. the drop is partly due to sluggish sales of new cars after the expiry of the buyers of ecoof had friendly cars last year.
a british woman has completed a 7,000-kilometer solo trip across the pacific ocean in a rowboat. she arrived in the u.s. state of alaska after a five-month trip that started in japan. it was sarah's second attempt to cross the pacific. she failed last year when her boat was wrecked off the coast of miyagi prefecture. the japanese coast guard rescued her. she has been trying to travel around the world riding human-powered vehicles including bicycles and kay axe. the 28-year-old adventurer left the coast in chiba prefecture on april 27th. she arrived in the alaskan city of addict on monday. high winds and strong winds caused her rowboat to capsize five times during the five-month trip and she nearly collided with a cargo trip. she suffered from burn without,
but described the experience as the most intense and memorable five months of her life. there is a tropical storm off the coast of japan and our meteorologist is standing by. do we in tokyo have something to worry about? very well could be expected from the tropical storm as it pulls off toward the north and the brunt of the storm system will be across the violence. you are seeing rainfall and not to mention the fact that the winds are gusting up over 120 kilometers per hour, very well possible, but the good news you see it pulling off toward the rth and it's starting to churn toward the northeast and it will jetson all of the way out toward the northern pacific so that's the good news with this. it will stay offshore, but really rough waves near the coastline, three to six meter high waves very well possible there and also theseinds gusting up to tropical storm strength.
especially going into thursday morning right here coastal areas as it it does push by, be do have a trough coming in and that will bring thunderstorms across hokkaido, but the big top wick this as thetorm pulls off toward the northeast, it will wrap cool, northerly winds behind it and autumn weather will filter through china axe korea and over toward japan. have a jacket by the time friday rolls around because it will feel cooler. i want to talk about the tropics. we have a new tropical depression starting to form in the south china sea and all of the infwreed yents are in place right here for the possibility of this developing into something bigger. we definitely want to keep a close eye on it, but the big topic is we have been seeing this continued monsoon flow and that has been bringing some devastating floods down here, deadly landslides, as well and this could make that situation worse, so definitely want to continue to keep an eye on this and even if it's not named it will bring the heavy rainfall
with it. for the temperatures across, they're in the 30s and shanghai at 25 and seoul on thursday. let's take a look at the americas and what's going on in the pacific northwest. we have a low pressure area. some severe thunderstorms in the northern plains and behind it into the rockies we'll be seeing snowfall at 30 centimeters at some of the higher elevations is very well possible there. high pressure dominating much of the great lakes region and it will create fair weather and you could be seeing fog out there and that will burn town big time. you is's stationary boundaries. just one low pressure after another brings rainfall here. some have seen upward of 450 millimeters since the beginning of the weekend. deaf fitly showers will kick up and that will bring the risk of
flooding across much of florida. as far as temperature, miami with a high of 33 and just sunny skies there for you and we'll be seeing temperatures into the low 20s. as far as europe at this time, high pressure is dominating much of central europe and we do see the cloud cover coming in from the west and that will bring in showers later in the week. if you are in the british isles do expect rain possibly by thursday going into friday as that will start to work its way in from the west. your temperatures will be staying on the cool side. london with 18, paires at 24 and berlin. moscow, just five here on thursday ask that's a look at your world weather. here's a look at the extended forecast.
the olympic torch will travel to outer space for the first time. the torch for the sochi winter games will fly to the international space station later this year and be taken on a space walk. two cosmonaughts and an american astronaut are set to lift off aboard a soyuz spacecraft from kazakhstan and they will receive the torch in november and they will take it with them when they conduct a space walk although it will not be lit for safety reasons. >> translator: taking the olympic torch to space is a very serious technical -- is very serious technical work. especially for the crew and we were simulating that a lot. >> the olympics will be held next february and the torch relay will begin next month with 14,000 torch bearers expected to take part. >> that's "newsline" for this hour. i'm gene otani in tokyo.