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


Kishida takes office as Japan PM, eyes Oct. 31 general election

TOKYO - Fumio Kishida took office as Japan's prime minister on Monday, forming a Cabinet that will seek to keep COVID-19 under control while reviving a battered economy as he looks to appeal to voters heading into an upcoming general election in less than a month.

The election for the House of Representatives, the more powerful lower chamber of parliament, is slated to take place Oct. 31, according to people familiar with Kishida's thinking, earlier than the first half of November as had been expected.


Tokyo's daily COVID cases below 100 for 1st time since Nov.

TOKYO - Tokyo confirmed 87 daily coronavirus cases Monday, marking the first time since November last year that the count has fallen below 100, as the capital continues to see a steady decrease in infections.

A state of emergency that covered Tokyo and 18 prefectures ended on Thursday. Tokyo confirmed a record 5,773 cases on Aug. 13.


China may try to maintain stable ties with Japan's new PM Kishida

BEIJING - China is expected to try to maintain stable relations with Japan's administration under new Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, ahead of the country's major events such as the Beijing Olympics and the Communist Party's twice-a-decade congress.

Chinese senior officials are closely watching whether Kishida's ruling Liberal Democratic Party will win in the upcoming House of Representatives election and ensure the longevity of his Cabinet, they said.


S. Korea leader congratulates new Japan PM Kishida

SEOUL - South Korean President Moon Jae In congratulated Fumio Kishida on being elected new prime minister of Japan in parliament on Monday.

In a congratulatory letter sent to Kishida, Moon conveyed his willingness to cooperate with the new Japanese leader in improving South Korea-Japan ties in a future-oriented manner, according to presidential office spokeswoman Park Kyung Mee.


Japan in talks to procure oral COVID-19 drug for mild symptoms

TOKYO - Japan's health ministry is in talks with U.S. pharmaceutical company Merck & Co. to procure an oral COVID-19 medicine developed by the firm for use by those suffering from mild symptoms, sources familiar with the matter said Monday.

The antiviral drug molnupiravir, which prevents the virus from entering or multiplying in the body, can be taken at home unlike existing medicines casirivimab and imdevimab, which are administered intravenously in an "antibody cocktail" treatment, raising hopes that it may reduce the strain on medical facilities.


Trading in China Evergrande shares halted in Hong Kong

SHANGHAI - Trading in China Evergrande Group shares was halted in Hong Kong on Monday, the special administrative region's stock exchange said, a move believed to be linked to financial difficulties the debt-laden major property developer is experiencing.

Hong Kong-based property developer Hopson Development, meanwhile, is planning to take over 51 percent in Evergrande's property management unit Evergrande Property Services Group, the official China Global Television Network quoted a financial news agency as reporting.


60,000 homes in west Japan city face water outage after pipe collapse

WAKAYAMA, Japan - Around 60,000 homes in a western Japan city have been facing a water outage since a section of a water pipe bridge collapsed, city officials said Monday.

Some 138,000 people in parts of the city of Wakayama have been affected. The bridge that spans the Kinokawa River is not used for crossing banks by people or cars.


Tennis: Osaka out of WTA top 10 for 1st time in 3 yrs

TOKYO - Former world No. 1 Naomi Osaka has fallen outside the top 10 in the WTA women's singles rankings for the first time in three years.

In the latest rankings released Monday, Osaka dropped from seventh to 12th, while the top three -- Ashleigh Barty, Aryna Sabalenka and Karolina Pliskova -- remained unchanged.