People dressed as armored warriors compete for a sacred flag (C) during a traditional summer event in the northeastern Japan city of Minamisoma on July 30, 2023. (Kyodo) ==Kyodo

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


Number of hotel guests in June exceeds pre-pandemic levels in Japan

TOKYO - The number of Japanese and foreign tourists staying at hotels and other accommodation facilities in June exceeded pre-pandemic monthly levels for the first time in more than three years, rising 1.0 percent from the same month in 2019, government data showed Monday.

There were around 46.3 million guests, according to preliminary data by the Japan Tourism Agency, with pandemic restrictions completely lifted and COVID-19's classification downgraded in May to a level equivalent to the seasonal flu.


Halloween "Joker" attacker gets 23 years for Tokyo train stabbing, fire

TOKYO - A man was sentenced to 23 years in prison on Monday on charges related to a attack on Halloween night 2021 in which he stabbed a man and lit a fire on a Tokyo train while dressed as the Joker.

The Tachikawa branch of the Tokyo District Court handed down the sentence on Kyota Hattori, 26, who was charged with attempted murder and arson offenses. He admitted to stabbing a male passenger and starting the fire on a moving express train.


Myanmar junta to extend state of emergency for 4th time: reports

YANGON - Myanmar's ruling military is expected to extend its state of emergency, due to expire Tuesday, according to local media reports, amid prolonged conflict with those who call for democracy after a February 2021 coup that ousted the country's civilian government.

The junta on Monday held a meeting of the National Defense and Security Council, the country's supreme decision-making body, and discussed the state of emergency, the reports said, though the result of the discussion has not been announced yet.


Football: Japan thump Spain 4-0 to top Group C at Women's World Cup

WELLINGTON - Hinata Miyazawa bagged her second brace of the Women's World Cup on Monday as Japan claimed a resounding 4-0 victory over Spain to top Group C with three straight wins.

Miyazawa's clinical finishes came on either side of her team's second from Riko Ueki as world No. 11 Nadeshiko Japan cruised to a 3-0 lead at the break against sixth-ranked Spain. Mina Tanaka buried a superb fourth goal eight minutes from time at Wellington Regional Stadium.


Japan's FY 2022 forex account surplus of 3.5 tril. yen beats estimate

TOKYO - Japan had a larger-than-estimated surplus of 3.48 trillion yen ($25 billion) in its special account for forex funds in fiscal 2022, helped by a weak yen that boosted earnings from assets such as U.S. Treasurys, the Finance Ministry said Monday.

The government is yet to decide what to do with the surplus, around 641 billion yen more than the government's initial estimate. It could be used to cover an expected sharp increase in defense spending, which would prompt calls for plans to increase taxes to be delayed.


Large typhoon to approach southern Japan through Aug. 2

TOKYO - A large typhoon is expected to approach Okinawa Prefecture in southern Japan through Wednesday, prompting the weather agency to warn of strong winds and storm tides in the region.

Typhoon Khanun has already led to the cancelation of flights departing from and arriving in Okinawa. The typhoon could also approach Amami-Oshima Island in southwestern Kagoshima Prefecture, the Japan Meteorological Agency said Monday.


BOJ conducts special bond-buying operation, 1st since Feb. 22

TOKYO - The Bank of Japan on Monday announced a special open market operation to buy 300 billion yen ($2 billion) worth of Japanese government bonds, the first such purchase since Feb. 22, as long-term yields jumped.

The move came as the benchmark yield on 10-year bonds surged to a nine-year high above 0.6 percent at one stage on Monday following the central bank's decision last week to allow it to rise past the 0.5 percent cap.


Japan's June industrial output rises 2.0% on month

TOKYO - Japan's industrial output in June expanded 2.0 percent from the previous month, led by shipments of motor vehicles on the back of solid demand in both domestic and overseas markets, government data showed Monday.

The seasonally adjusted index of production at factories and mines stood at 105.3 against the 2020 base of 100, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry said in a preliminary report. The increase followed a revised 2.2 percent contraction in May.


Video: Armored warriors compete in horse race in northeastern Japan