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


Japan PM aims to cut Olympic visitors, finish vaccination by Nov.

TOKYO - Japan will aim to further cut the number of non-athletes from abroad for next month's Tokyo Olympics and finish inoculating all citizens who want COVID-19 vaccines by November in an attempt to prevent the further spread of coronavirus, Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said Wednesday.

During a debate in parliament with party leaders, the first in about two years, Suga reiterated his determination to go ahead with staging the Olympics and Paralympics, despite strong public opposition.


Japan, Australia affirm importance of peace across Taiwan Strait

TOKYO - Japan and Australia on Wednesday affirmed the importance of peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait for the first time in bilateral talks, while agreeing to deepen security cooperation amid China's rising assertiveness in regional waters.

The move during virtual security talks followed similar calls for a peaceful resolution of cross-strait issues during Japan's recent summit talks with the United States and the European Union.


Japan to lift COVID-19 quasi-emergency in 3 prefectures

TOKYO - The Japanese government plans to lift the COVID-19 quasi-state of emergency in three prefectures after this weekend as scheduled as infections are declining, officials said Wednesday.

"We will consult with experts and make a decision regarding Gunma, Ishikawa and Kumamoto as early as tomorrow as we continue to watch the situation with a strong sense of caution," Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Manabu Sakai told a press conference.


Australian baseball team pulls out of Tokyo Olympic qualifying

TOKYO - Australia has withdrawn from the final baseball qualifying tournament for this summer's Tokyo Games because of difficulties stemming from the coronavirus pandemic, the sport's national governing body announced Wednesday.

Baseball Australia chief executive Glenn Williams said Australia would not send a team to the June 22-26 event in Mexico, originally slated to be held from June 16 in Taiwan, after the late change in venue made coronavirus safety measures unworkable.


Japan eyes regional revitalization with transfer of 10,000 workers

TOKYO - The Japanese government on Wednesday pledged to promote regional revitalization by preparing a list of 10,000 workers interested in moving to rural areas and working at local firms.

By compiling the list of potential workers at local companies and promoting teleworking from rural areas, the government hopes to "rectify" the Tokyo-centric economy and population to help revive regional areas, according to a draft of its annual economic policy guideline presented at a government panel meeting.


Eisai sees potential of new Alzheimer's drug but costs remain concern

TOKYO - Eisai Co. CEO Haruo Naito said Wednesday a new drug for Alzheimer's disease it has developed with U.S. firm Biogen Inc. has the potential to become a "blockbuster" product.

The approval by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Monday of the drug Aduhelm raised hopes for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease. But concern remains about higher medical costs as a patient would be charged $56,000 a year.


Mongolian voters go to polls to elect new president

ULAANBAATAR - Mongolian voters went to polls Wednesday to choose their next president, with three contenders vying to be President Khaltmaa Battulga's successor with a single six-year term.

Ukhnaa Khurelsukh of the ruling Mongolian People's Party, who was prime minister until January, is pitted against Sodnomzundui Erdene of the main opposition Democratic Party and Dangaasuren Enkhbat, a former lawmaker backed by several parties.


U.S. eyes 1st in-person summit with Japan, Australia, India in fall

WASHINGTON - The United States plans to host the first in-person summit with Japan, Australia and India in Washington in the fall, a senior official said Tuesday.

Speaking at a think-tank event, White House coordinator for the Indo-Pacific Kurt Campbell said, "Our goal is to hold an in-person Quad meeting" to take place "here in Washington in the fall with all leaders in attendance."