Japan players greet supporters following a 1-0 loss to Costa Rica in a World Cup Group E football match at Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium in Al Rayyan, Qatar, on Nov. 27, 2022. (Kyodo) ==Kyodo

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


Ad agency Hakuhodo raided as Olympic bid-rigging investigation widens

TOKYO - Japanese prosecutors and a fair trade watchdog on Monday searched offices including the headquarters of major advertising agency Hakuhodo Inc. on suspicion of rigging bids for contracts related to test events for last year's Tokyo Olympics, just days after raiding another ad giant over the case.

The latest searches, also covering Tokyu Agency Inc. and two event production companies, were conducted as investigations related to the Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics have expanded from a scandal involving the alleged receipt by a former games organizing committee executive, Haruyuki Takahashi, of 200 million yen ($1.4 million) in bribes from five companies.


Rare protest against "zero-COVID" policy erupts in central Beijing

BEIJING - About 1,000 people marched in central Beijing through the early hours of Monday, protesting China's strict "zero-COVID" policy involving lockdowns, with some openly calling for an end to "dictatorship" in criticism of President Xi Jinping.

It was the first major demonstration in the capital since Xi came to power in 2012. Similar protests erupted in Shanghai and about a dozen other Chinese cities over the weekend, according to witnesses and videos on social media, reflecting rising public anger over prolonged heavy coronavirus restrictions amid a spike in infections.


Japan holds interceptor drill near nuke plant amid North Korea threats

TSURUGA, Japan - Japan's Air Self-Defense Force on Monday conducted a missile interceptor drill near a nuclear plant on the Sea of Japan coast, amid caution over North Korea's repeated ballistic missile test-firings.

The non-live fire exercise involving the ASDF's Patriot Advanced Capability-3 system was held in the central prefecture of Fukui, which hosts a number of nuclear plants.


BOJ books 1st unrealized bond loss under Kuroda in fiscal half

TOKYO - The Bank of Japan said Monday it booked an unrealized loss of 874.9 billion yen ($6.3 billion) on its government bond holdings in the six months to September, the first under Governor Haruhiko Kuroda, after bond prices fell amid global monetary tightening.

The loss, the largest for the BOJ since fiscal 1998 under the current accounting standards, came as the central bank ramped up bond buying to keep borrowing costs at rock-bottom levels against a global tide of monetary tightening. Bond prices move inversely to yields.


Tokyo students take oral English test in high school entry exam amid doubts

TOKYO - The Tokyo metropolitan government has, for the first time, administered an English speaking test as part of its public high school entry exam amid doubts that the tests will be graded fairly.

It also marked the first time in Japan that a test developed by a private company has been used to assess students' entry into public high schools.


Japan emperor discharged from hospital after tissue examination

TOKYO - Emperor Naruhito was discharged from a hospital in Tokyo on Monday after undergoing a tissue examination for an enlarged prostate.

The Imperial Household Agency said it will announce the results at a later date.


Football: Spain draw 1-1 with Germany as World Cup Group E heats up

AL KHOR, Qatar - Spain and Germany drew 1-1 in their World Cup Group E encounter late Sunday in Qatar, meaning all four teams in the group still have a chance of progressing to the round of 16.

Japan's loss to Costa Rica earlier the same day left them second in the group with three points, behind leaders Spain on four and ahead of Costa Rica on goal difference. Germany were fourth on one point.


'90s Japanese film "All Under the Moon" director Yoichi Sai dies

TOKYO - Yoichi Sai, a film director known for his realistic depictions of the stories of Koreans living in Japan in the 1993 film "All Under the Moon" and the 2004 film "Blood and Bones," died of bladder cancer at his home in Tokyo on Sunday, his family said. He was 73.

Born in Nagano Prefecture to an ethnic Korean father and a Japanese mother, Sai was a longtime leader in the Japanese film industry, having served as president of the Directors Guild of Japan for 18 years beginning in 2004.