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tv   Newsline 30min  KCSMMHZ  January 1, 2013 6:00am-6:30am PST

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welcome to nhk world "newsline." the prime minister says he's determined to improve relations between japan and south korea. ties between the neighbors have been strained because of a dispute over the takishima islands, which are claimed by japan. he met on tuesday with his special envoy to south korea. . he told them the country is one of japan's most important neighbors and that they share the values of upholding democracy.
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and market economics. abe said he hopes japan and south korea will make a fresh start through the launch of their new governments. the prime minister took power last month. he will soon relay the message to the incoming administration. >> translator: i will convey the prime minister's message and would like to create an environment in which the two nations can iron out differences to improve bilateral ties. >> nukaga is scheduled to travel to seoul later this week. prime minister abe was among many who offered new year's greetings to japan's emperor and empress. the imperial couple attended an annual ceremony with senior diplomats. the gathering happened in tokyo at the imperial palace. the emperor said in his message that he prays for the prosperity of the nation and the happiness of its people.
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the imperial couple received greetings from the prime minister abe and speakers of both chambers of the diet in the morning and their spouses in the afternoon. the public will be invited to greet the emperor and the empress and family members on wednesday at the imperial palace. north korea's state run television ushered in the new year by praising the achievements of leader kim jung-un. korean central television aired a fireworks display. a commentator described kim jong-un's political achievements including the launch of a rocket. analysts believe it was a test of long-range missile technology. north korean tv usually broadcasts simple greetings. it's rare for it to broadcast fireworks displays. kim jong-un has delivered the first years speech by a north korean leader in 19 years. he said the country should put a
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priority or healing the rift with south korea. state run central television broadcast his speech for more than 20 minutes. >> translator: what's important is to solve the confrontation between the two koreas. south korea should scrap its anti-north policies and take steps toward reck -- reconciliation and unification. >> many countries believe the rocket was a test of long-range ballistic missile technology. >> translator: we should use the technology to build a strong economy. this is our slogan for 2013 for the party and the people. we should continue to fly the flag of our military-first policy, to boost our military power. >> kim gave the speech indoors. when applause was heard, the screen switched to a photograph of a building.
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no audience was shown. north korea's founder delivered policy speeches on new year's day during his tenure. under his successor kim jong il, the messages appeared as a joint editorial by two or three newspapers. many people are concerned about what actions north korea will take this year following the launch of a rocket. a former diplomat with the u.s. state department shared his insights with us. he had a variety of informal contacts with high ranking north korean officials. he says north korea's missile program is intended to give the north the upper hand in its negotiations with the united states and he predicts more to follow. >> north korea's game plan, i believe, consists of several critical elements. one element is to continue to develop their nuclear weapons capability. and they are doing that. they've had a couple of nuclear weapons tests, one of which did
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not work very well. one of which worked marginally successfully. i suspect they are continuing to work on that and at some point in the future we'll see additional nuclear tests from them. north korea, i believe, is determined to become a de facto nuclear weapons state and to get the world to accept that. >> revere says the u.s. should show its willingness to engage with north korea through dialogue. >> i think dialogue has an important utility in terms of dealing with north korea. it has a number of uses. it can help us explore north korean thinking, explore possible north korean flexibility, explore the reasons and reasoning behind their actions. it can help us develop a better sense of how the regime thinks and what its priorities are. but maybe most importantly for
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us, it can help us deliver strong and clear and important messages directly to the north koreans. but at the same time, we ought to be taking all of these other steps in terms of deterrents and pressure to demonstrate to north koreans that we will defend ourselves. >> revere also emphasized a joint effort with countries in the region is important, including japan and south korea. supporters of china's impresidented nobel laureate posted videos online showing his wife under house arrest. it's expected to draw fresh attention to how the government is treating the pro-democracy activist and his wife. the video was reportedly shot when the couple's friends visited last friday at her home in beijing. it shows visitors entering the residence in defiance of a guard who tried to stop them. she thanked her friends and told them that her health had
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improved slightly. she almost whispered into the ear of one of her visitors while they repeated many times they had to leave soon. the scenes indicate chinese authorities are keeping her under strict supervision. she has been under house arrest since the announcement in 2010 that the nobel peace prize had been awarded to her husband, who is serving an 11-year sentence. people in iraq have spent the beginning of the new year mourning dead family and friends. a series of bombings across the country has killed at least 23 people and wounded more than 80 others. investigators believe the attacks are the result of the on going conflict between shia and sunni muslims. the bomb went off on monday in a
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car parked in central baghdad. police suspect sunni extremists are targeting shia pilgrims on their way to a religious festival in the south in an attempt to deepen sectarian divisions. the deteriorating security situation is posing a major challenge for iraqi leaders and citizens. they're trying to rebuild after the 2003 war by capitalizing on the country's rich oil reserves. the president of russia says his citizens must pull together if they want their country to move forward. vladimir putin made his statements during a new year's address. analysts see it as a warning to his critics.
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they've criticized putin for allegedly committing fraud in the presidential election and for government corruption. >> translator: russia's development depends entirely on the unity of its people and of their sense of responsibility. >> analysts see his statement as an indication of his unwillingness to accept criticism, but it says he's also trying to show understanding of the russian people's dissatisfaction. and now here's the weather they missed the deadline. but democrats and republicans in the senate approved new legislation which now needs to be voted in by the house of
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representatives. senate republicans and democrats along with vice president joe biden reached the agreement late monday night. they're trying to stop the automatic tax hikes and spending cuts from taking effect because they fear that could trigger another recession. senators agreed income tax cuts for the middle class will continue but people who earn $450,000 or more a year will pay more taxes. that's $200,000 higher than the threshold president barack obama originally proposed. that is the senate deal postponed by two months, the spending cuts that are scheduled to start on january 1st. the senate passed the bill on two tuesday, two hours after the december 31st deadline. members of the republican-led house of representatives will vote on the bill on tuesday. lawmakers are expected to work on a stopgap measure to ensure the impact of the suspended tax cuts is minimal. doctors treating hillary clinton say they have found a blood clot between her brain and skull.
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but they say she is making an excellent recovery. staff at a hospital in new york issued a statement on monday, a day after clinton arrived for treatment. last month, doctors diagnosed her with a concussion after a stomach virus caused her to become dehydrated and faint. she had been resting at home since then. medical personnel say an mri revealed a clot in a vein between clinton's right here but they say she did not suffer a stroke or any neurological damage. they say she is in good spirits and engaging with the doctors, family and staff. they will set the right dosage of medication and they are confident she will make a full recovery. an american woman who helped draft japan's post car constitution has died. she lived in japan with her
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farther for ten years. he moved to the country to teach music. gordon late area tended college in the united states. in 1945, shortly after the end of world war ii, she worked as an interpreter and translator at the general headquarters of the allied forces in tokyo. the next year at the age of 22, gordon held draft clauses including article 24 which stipulate lats men and women are equal. gordon returned to the u.s. after the constitution took effect. she joined the japan society of new york and dedicated herself to cultural exchanges between the two nations. gordon was suffering from cancer. she died saturday at her home in new york.
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japan's bullet trains are known for being fast and on time. that kind of time keeping requires more than just the latest technology. here's a look at what's going on in the driver's cabin. >> reporter: for some people, being on time is a virtue. for this man, it's a driving passion. >> translator: my goal for today is to be within one second of the schedule when passing stations and five seconds for station stops. >> reporter: he's been driving bullet trains for ten years. today he is departing from osaka station and his destination is tokyo, a journey of 2:36. the automatic control system sets a maximum speed. depending on the spacing between trains. but the computer can't determine the optimum speed to stay on
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schedule. that is still in the hands of the driver. >> translator: 54:15. on time. in order to be on schedule, i calculate the speed by subtracting the distances. >> reporter: that number, 163, is the distance in kilometers from tokyo station. he uses this number to figure out the exact speed needed to arrive at the next stop on time. no computers for this calculation. it's all done in his head. so far he has stopped at two stations and passed two others. on time to the second. but then -- >> translator: departing 15 seconds left. >> reporter: it took time
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getting the passengers on and off. he accelerates. he wants to make up for the delay, but he has to be careful. if he goes too fast, he'll trigger the automatic brakes, nudging the shifter so he keeps just inside the speed limit. time check. >> translator: passing, three seconds late. >> reporter: he makes up the lost time over the next two stations. by the third station, he's got train and timetables synchronized again. >> translator: passing on time. >> reporter: with the exception of the two through stations, he kept precisely to the schedule, all the way to tokyo.
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>> translator: i was getting worried. but in the end, i was able to keep my schedule. >> reporter: his 2 1/2 hour journey is recorded on a chip card. it's all there, speed, acceleration and even brake usage, second by second. on a good day, his car is a record of drifgs perfection. one his passengers will never see. that's fine with him. his eyes stay fixed on the clock. japanese robots that look after the elderly, it sounds like science fiction, but it's increasingly science fact. and with good reason. japanese society's aging faster than any in the world. over three million people suffer from see nile dementia. nursing staff and facilities are stretched past capacity. researchers are building new and humane intelligent machines.
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>> reporter: a new game is being played at this home south of tokyo. the robot works the brain and fights aging. people from the nursing industry interested in the robot came along to watch. >> translator: coming here today and seeing people talking and dancing with them made me realize that robots have become something very commonplace to old people, too. >> reporter: many of the nursing care robots are japanese inventions. they're catching the eye of facilities overseas.
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in some countries, they recognize the medical equipment. ironically, care giving robots have been slow to catch on in japan. people still expect the functions of caring to be given only by humans. but the situation may be changing. i'm visiting an exhibition for nursing care robots. similar events have been happening across japan. they're attracting people who walk work in social welfare. these people may have noticed the increasing media report of how a robot can help elderly sufferers and nursing home staff. about 20 people with senile dementia. this baby seal is fitted with sensors. when stroked or talked, to it
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responds by blinking. this 93-year-old woman came to the home about a year ago. she has dementia and was already very forgetful. she kept to herself. at night she couldn't sleep. she sometimes took out her anger on the staff. >> translator: she became obsessed with going back home. she'd get argumentative saying i have to go and cook the dinner. but the curious thing happened. after caregivers brought in the robots, she began to change. she used to look after her grandchild while the parents, her daughter and her husband, went to work.
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the robot reawakened such feelings in her. she began treating the seal like her grandchild. little by little, her emotional ups and downs have eased. she gets angry much less often. her night time wanderings all but ceased after she began sleeping with the robot in her arms. this has brought huge relief to the overnight staff. with the robot, she is also recovering her physical strength. before, she needed assistance to walk even a short way. now she can walk around the facility on her own. the robot helps the home in other ways.
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>> translator: conversation between people with dementia is usually difficult. but the robot breaks the ice and makes our residents laugh. we find it very useful. around the world, aging and sh shrinking populations face many challenges. japan's robots may help ease their rate. nhk world. thousands of people waiting to go home. tons of debris waiting for disposal. vast tracts of land waiting to be restored. overcoming the challenges of japan's 2011 disaster won't be easy. but step-by-step people are moving forward. find out how on the "road ahead" every wednesday at 1:00 p.m. japan time right here on
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"newsline." the head of a family dynasty is preparing to step down. he is a master craftsman presiding over one of the most famous names in japanese porcelain. just like any royal succession, this transition from father to son is a critical period. 14 generations of tradition hang in the balance. >> reporter: cherry blossoms drooping over a platter. this is a traditional style. it's the work of this man. head of a porcelain dynasty. he inherited his title 30 years ago. he is now 78. at some point he will pass the prestigious name to his eldest
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son but he has much to teach. the transition begins many years in advance. pottery production began in the early 17th century. the first generation of porcelains appeared at this time. the family has been the driving force of the ceramics ever since. more than 50 people work at the kiln. they continue to lead their fellow craftsmen. the leader became sick three years ago. little by little, his son took on more important work. he started supervising the firing of the kiln. but always under the watchful eye of his father. >> translator: you're just imitating. make a contrast with hues.
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>> translator: i got it wrong. >> translator: there is a tremendous breadth and depth in the word beauty. unless you understand that, you won't be a good ceramic painter. >> reporter: the teacher is strict and the training goes on every day. >> translator: i want him to challenge himself more. it's okay for him to make mistakes and embarrass himself now. >> reporter: while learning from his father, he is also pursuing work on his own designs. this piece was created by one of his ancestors hundreds of years ago. he is impressed by the balance and use of empty space. he scrutinizes the designs of this period measuring and
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plotting. the future master has started exhibiting his own work. but he knows there is still a long way to go. >> translator: in the future, i hope i'll be remembered as the best in the history of our family. i have to work hard. >> translator: there are expectations in japan and all over the world. it's my son's duty to carry on with an acceptable level of work. >> reporter: both father and son are working to keep a tradition alive. and the next few years will determine how the prestigious name lives on. and now here's the weather forecast.
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prime minister abe says he is determined to improve relations between japan and south korea. ties between the neighbors have been strained because of a dispute over the islands which
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are controlled by south korea but claimed by japan. he met on tuesday with his special envoy to south korea. he told them the country is one of japan's most important neighbors and that they share the values of upholding democracy. he hopes japan and south korea will make a fresh start through the launch of their new governments. the prime minister took power last month. he will soon relay the message to the incoming administration. >> translator: i will convey the prime minister's message and would like to create an environment in which the two nations can iron out differences to improve bilateral ties. >> nukaga is scheduled to travel to seoul earlier this week.
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we'll be back in an hour. have a great day wherever you are and happy holidays. -- captions by vitac --
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