hello there, welcome to "newsline." it's friday, august 14th. i'm catherine kobayashi in tokyo. authorities in tianjin say they're still combating the fire that followed deadly explosions and they're trying to figure out how it all started. the blast ripped through a warehouse storing hazardous materials. the explosions left 50 people dead. more than 700 others are injured. state-run xinhua news agency says dozens who were working at the nearby port are missing. firefighters carefuled tried to put out the flames throughout the night. they've been spraying sand and
extinguishing agents as flammable chemicals are believed to remain at the site. it's expected to take some time for the full extent of the damage to become clear. >> translator: the rescue headquarters has set up five teams to treat the injured, clean up accident sites, relocate residents, maintain stability and investigate the cause of the accident. >> officials say they're still investigating what triggered the explosions. they say the first blast was equivalent to three tons of tnt exploding and the second to 21 tons. the two explosions occurred about 30 seconds apart. japanese prime minister shinzo abe is poised to continue a war anniversary tradition undertaken by some of his predecessors. he will issue a statement about japan's role in world war ii. and its progress since then. abe told senior members of his liberal democratic party last friday that he'll release a
statement after it's approved by the cabinet. abe will apparently say he upholds the position on historical recognition outlined by the previous administration. he's expected to express deep remorse for japan's actions in the war. and based on reflection on the past, to pledge that japan will never wage war again. the statement is expected to include the expression, japan's colonial rule, aggression, and apology. all were used in statements issued by prime minister tomiichi murayama in 1995 and junichiro koizumi a decade later. observers inside and outside japan have been watching to see if abe would include these key phrases in his statement. the prime minister had initially indicated he might not use exactly the same expressions as past prime ministers. he also plans to express gratitude to countries that supported japan's reinstatement into the international community. he will emphasize his intention
to contribute to world peace and prosperity. the prime minister will likely continue to refine the language in the statement before submitting it for cabinet approval on friday. and neighboring countries have been closely watching to see how abe would refer to historical issues. a prime minister's statement becomes the government's official view with the cabinet's approval. two former leaders have issued the official statement on the day japan commemorates the war's end. then-prime minister tomiichi murayama spoke on the 50th anniversary. it was the first official statement referring to japan's wartime aggression. >> translator: during the certain period in the not too distant past, japan following a mistaken national policy, advanced along the road to war only to ensnare the japanese people in a fateful crisis and through its colonial rule and aggression caused tremendous damage and suffering to the
people of many countries particularly to those of asian nations. >> reporter: murayama offered what he called deep remorse and heartfelt apology. ten years later junichiro koizumi issued a similar message when he was prime minister. he repeated the phrase that japan caused damage to its people through colonial rule and aggression. and once again, he expressed feelings of deep remorse and heartfelt apology. earlier this year, prime minister shinzo abe said he would draft a new statement to coincide with the 70th anniversary. >> translator: as we head towards the 80th, 90th and 100th anniversaries to come, japan must make still greater contributions towards world peace and stability under the flag of proactive contribution to peace. in this milestone anniversary year, i intend to send out to
the world the message of our clear resolve. >> reporter: leaders of china and south korea repeatedly urged abe to follow the path of his predecessorsapparently insisting he use key phrases of murayama and koizumi. other news we're following this hour, russia's deputy prime minister has visited an island at the center of the territorial dispute with japan. yuri trutnev arrived on thursday in etorofu. he inspected the venue of a forum that'seing organized by the russian government. the forum is focused on the economic development of etorofu and three other islands comprising the northern territories. the japanese government maintains the islands are an inherent part of japan. it says the islands were illegally occupied during world war ii. they say that russian prime minister dmitry medvedev may join the forum on the island.
it may negatively affect negotiations for president vladimir putin to travel to japan later in the year. the foreign industry on thursday phoned the minister dmitri birichevsky that the islands are japanese territory and they regard trutnev's visit as regrettable. birichevsky responded the islands e russian. hed h wld con japan's protest to his government. phone with the russian foreign e miniry through the japanese embassy in moscow. for japanese people august 15, 1945 is the day world war ii ended. now a project is under way to ensure that future generations will be able to hear memories of what happened that day told in the voices of those who lived
through it. nhk wod has this report. >> a series of books called "my august 15" was published earlier this year. they're firsthand accounts of the end of world war ii. about 90 contributors including artists and cartoonists described what happened to them 70 years ago. the stories in this book are a little different. with the stroke of a special pen, you can hear the voices of the people who wrote them. ken takakura was ator. he died last year at the age of 83.
just before his death, he recorded his august 15th story for the book. >> reporter: i >> translator: it's not just reading word ors looking at pictures. each person's voice is unique. they stay in your heart and can be deeply moving. >> reporter: the book is a creation of a tokyo publishing house. this is one of the editors. her team is inspired by the idea of bringing a new dimension to these stories by adding the voices of those who lived them. she believes this will make the memories of war even more vivid.
>> translator: nothing is more effective than when people who have written about their experiences share their thoughts and feelings in their own voices. >> reporter: she visited a man to record his story. he is a best-selling author of children's literature. at first, he declined to cooperate. >> translator: it's about august 15th. i have a lot to say about august 6th, but we have nothing to say about august 15th. >> reporter: he was a young boy when he endured the automatic bomb attack in hiroshima nine days before the end of the war.
his home was only three kilometers from ground zero. he's still overwhelmed by memories of what he went through 70 years ago. he persisted until he finally agreed to talk about his experience.she persisted until agreed to talk about his experience. >> reporter: with each recording, nakashima has become even more convinced of the need to preserve the voices of the war's survivors. >> translator: people who were
born when the war ended are now 70. those who lived through it are getting older. what is written will remain for a long time, but the opportunity to hand down the voices as they actually sound will soon be lost forever. >> reporter: the publisher that makes the recordings along with the books to libraries and schools around the country. and nakashima hopes that the voices of those who survived the war will teach children the true meaning of peace. reporting for nhk world. islamic state militants are claiming responsibility for a truck bomb that ripped through a marketplace in the iraqi capital baghdad. police say at least 60 people are dead and more than 150 are
wounded. authorities say the attack occurred in a predominantly shia muslim neighborhood. militants with the terrorist group posted a message online to say they targeted the area for that reason. they also took responsibility for a car bomb attack a few days earlier at a market in a province near baghdad. many iraqis are criticizing the government for failing to put a stop to terrorist acts. they're also protesting against poor public services including frequent power outages. the government is struggling to fix the problems partly because it's spending more money to fight the militants. north korea state-run tv has wrod cast video of the nation's soldiers shooting at an image of south korean president park guen-hye in live fire training. korean central television aired the footage on wednesday. north korea has long criticized park through its official media, but this appears to be the first clip showing north korean troops firing at a cut-out picture of
her with automatic rifles and handguns. south korea's unification ministry says the north's actions are intolerable as it violates minimum logic within the same ethnic group and incites ethnic hatred. pyongyang's behavior only reminds south korea and the international community of its belligerence and further isolates north korea. north korea is believed to have taken the provocative step to show its opposition to the planned exercise with the united states next week. the people who run a nuclear power plant in southwestern japan say a reactor has started generating electricity. they resumed operations this week at the sendai plant. they're the first to do so under strict regulations imposed after the 2011 earthquake and tsunami.
workers at kyushu electric power act slaivated the reactor on tuesday. they say nuclear fission is now self-sustaining. it means they can generate and transmit electricity. company officials say it will take about ten days to reach full output. they will then undergo a comprehensive inspection of the facility. if everything goes smoothly, they'll launch commercial operations early next month. japan's environment minister is urging power companies to reconsider whether their latest targets on reducing greenhouse gases are realistic. 35 power suppliers announced last month they aim to cut emissions by 35% by 2030 compared to the level in 2013. but environment minister is skeptical whether the target can be achieved as many utilities plan to build new coal-fired power plants. he announced that his ministry
does not support such plans. coal burning plants produce cheap electricity but emit large amounts of greenhouse gases. crude oil prices in new york briefly hit their lowest level in almost 6 1/2 years. commodity traders became concerned china's economic slowdown may reduce command for oil. sell orders for crude oil futures fell on thursday after china's central bank devalued the nation's currency for a third day. the bunchmark west texas intermediate fell more than 3% from the previous day to below $42 a barrel at one point. that's the lowest since march 2009 when the financial crisis hit oil prices. market players expect crude oil prices to stay low for a while as demand from china remains sluggish. owners of a hotel in southwestern japan have found a unique way to cut costs. their porters, concierge and
check-in staff have been replaced with robots. because they believe being efficient doesn't have to be boring. >> reporter: greeted by this huge futuristic robot cloak room excitement goes up to witness a never-before-seen hotel. guests can turn to the check-in counter to be greeted by three very unusual receptionists. they're called actroids short for actor androids. >> welcome to the hotel. if you want to check in, please press one. if you want to check out, please press the checkout of the right signal. >> reporter: guests check themselves in with the robot's guidance. a robotic arm looks after their luggage. it's like a scene from a sci-fi
movie. >> it opens from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. got it? >> yes, thank you. >> reporter: this project is loosely translated to mean evolved hotel. that's because it breaks with many conventions of the trade. decorations have been pared back and reimagined through cutting-edge technology. this robot takes you and your luggage to your room. no keys are needed to open this door. only your face. a state of the art system records and recognizes guest's faces. after that there's no need to carry keys. so it's an efficient way to check in. the room is simple, empty of
unnecessary services and amenities. the focus is on comfort in a minimalist environment. that way the hotel can provide twin rooms for about $100. this cute robot can tell you almost anything you want to know. [ speaking japanese ] >> translator: if we're dealing with people, we can communicate. robots are different. i'd like to see how much communication and service robots can provide to people. technology progresses constantly. we have to keep up with it. come back a year later, ij you'll find that things have changed a lot. >> reporter: this hotel is the
world's first lodging to use robot technology. its operators say it will evolve. as the name suggests, to meet customers' needs. t may revolutionize the travel industry. reporting for nhk world. some south koreans are embracing a difficult chapter of their history. they're learning more about japan's colonial rule over the peninsula. more and more are visiting a restored japanese town from that era. nhk world reports. >> reporter: this is a fishing town with a population of 9,000. its streets are lined with traditional japanese houses. the village is crowded with visitors from all over south korea. one attraction is trying on a kimono.
this cafe serves macha green tea. this year the town received 120,000 visitors, many of them young people. >> it's just like becoming an idol or a japanese girl. i'm having a magical experience. >> reporter: during japan's colonial rule japanese fishermen moved to the town as it has rich fishing grounds. the town was filled with life. after the end of world war ii, all the japanese left the town. over time many buildings aged and the town became deserted. six years ago, the city of pohan started a project to restore the japanese town as a tourist attraction. many structures built by japanese in south korea during
colonial rule have been restored. a monument was set up here in honor of a japanese man who helped build roads and other infrastructure. but as you can see, someone has covered it. there was fierce opposition to the project. many people saw the town as a legacy of colonialism. but city officials argued that the restoration project was needed. >> translator: by preserving this history, we want to make sure that this painful period will never be repeated. our project will make people think about the future. >> reporter: this woman supported the project. she's head of a history museum
in the town. >> translator: i was glad to hear about the restoration project. this japanese town is part of our history. >> reporter: she used to walk at the south korean concert in t k fukuo fukuoka. she left her job so she could come to her home town. she wants to use her knowledge and experience to help south koreans better understand japanese culture. despite the chill in relations, many south koreans are interested in japanese culture and visit the town. >> translator: this town is living history. both cultures are side by side. this place helps people in both countries to understand each other. and i want to act as a bridge between them.
>> reporter: the japanese town looks just like it did in the old days. for many young south koreans, this is a way to understand and reflect on their country's history. reporting for nhk world. time for a check of the weather. people in tochigi prefecture north of tokyo are assessing damage after a tornado hit the area. >> just an exceptionally unstable weather back on thursday. back across tochigi, this is where storms have flared up the most. let's go to some video with have coming out of tochigi. we have this funnel cloud whipping through here. this is coming out on thursday from 11:30 a.m. the japan meteorological agency
saying this is likely about an f-0 tornado. it's the lowest on the scale of tornadoes but the thing is a tornado is a tornado. no matter the intensity, it blew the roof off a two-story building here. total of three buildings were damaged. good news, no injuries were reported out here. so that's fantastic news. but yeah, beer still seeing that threat as we go ahead into friday. the reason is we have the remnants of sodalor move through. so we've got cold air aloft and that creates a perfect recipe for storms to blow up. even into the tokyo area and northern japan we'll be seeing the storms that could produce damaging wind. the threat of tornadoes. when i say tornados the, you may be watching from anywhere else around the world and japan and tornadoes, that doesn't make
much sense. but it does. around this time of ye, august, september over towards october. if you're from the u.s. you think tornado season march and april. but this is the peak when tropical storms impact japan. and we often see those rain bands shift through like we saw this week. thel do happen out here quite often on average. the peak there in september. we do want to mention we have two tropical depressions at this time that we're continuing to monitor. this one might evolve into a tropical storm. it will be called goni. could impact saipan. the last thing you need out there is another storm system. heavy rainfall in the southeastern portions of china. some areas report about 150 millimeters in the last 24 hours. still showers out there. hong kong at 30, taipei at 29. in europe, this low brush area continuing to spin.
that will bring rain showers and even thorls across parts of france and over towards the netherlands. storms producing frequent lightning out there. winds upward of about 100 kilometers per hour and even hail coming out of this one. storms over towards the balkan peninsula. but north of that sunny skies. take a look at vienna. warsaw, 30. do want to talk about americas. storms even down towards florida, flash flood threats for you. but in the west, temperatures going to be swinging back and forth here. some areas across the pacific northwest north of this front. 20s all the way through the rest of your week. showers for you. look at saskatchewan. feeling a little more fall-like. south of that, things continuing to heat up all the way through the weekend. 48 my goodness there in death valley saturday for your high. i'll leave with you the extended outlook.
óóññ welcome to the 150th episode of "native report." i'm stacey thunder. and i'm tadd johnson. 11 years ago we created "native report" to celebrate the best of indian country, to provide an opportunity for our leaders, our elders, our youth and our community members to share important topics and stories. it has been an amazing journey filled with inspirational stories about how communities and individuals have taken on huge challenges. about our leaders continuing the fight for sovereignty, and about our youth growing into young leaders. stories of native artists, authors, actors, and musicians finding and honing their creative voice and vision, finding a place of prominence on the national stage. well, we aren't done yet. but just in case we ever forget that we're standing on the shoulders of giants, on this episode of "native report" we're looking back at 10 seasons of great stories from indian country.