hello and welcome to nhk "newsline." i'm raja pradhan with the latest from tokyo. a court in seoul will not allow an arrest warrant for the de facto head of the country's biggest conglomerate samsung. it doesn't see the need for an arrest right now. the court spent all night considering whether to approve the warrant for lee jae-yong is suspected of bribing a friend of park geun hye. it's part of the influence peddling scandal that led to park geun-hye being suspended.
prosecutors believe the bribes yae gave helped him cement power inside samsung in a bid to take over for his ailing father. what will you hearing over there, kim chan-ju? >> reporter: it's a huge blow for the special prosecutor, even as they have been accelerating the investigation. they say this could not only put the brakes on any efforts to question other conglomerates accused of handing over funds but also slowed an investigation into the president herself. many citizens are angry. some say samsung is above law and declaring justice is dead in
this country. they obviously supported the idea of the arrest and an opportunity to help the relationship with corruption and politics in south korea. >> what's the relationship between samsung? >> they have been on alert and were carefully watching the situation overnight. the conglomerate released a short statement after the statement was released. they said it's a relief that the relationship can continue. samsung makes up 20% of the country's exports and many were worried it could destabilize the management. a key business figure is saying that the main point of this scandal is that the presidential office forced companies to
contribute money and he says from that point of view he hopes he will be found innocent. samsung may have dodged a bullet from the investigators for now but the investigation isn't closed. on top of that, it might take some time for the country's biggest business group to regain the public's trust. >> all right. thank you very much for that from our bureau in seoul. also in south korea, a local politician has put up a statue symbolizing women referred to as comfort women on islands his country controls but japan claims. japan and south korea agreed over a year ago to settle the comfort women issue, but statues symbolizing the women stand in south korea. some assembly members there are collecting donations for such a statue on an island in the sea of japan. >> translator: i think it would be improper to put up a statue
on the islands. >> kim said the islands are symbolic when it comes to protecting south korea's territorial sovereignty. he said the issues of the comfort women and statues representing them should be considered carefully. yoshisa suga said on tuesday japan has launched a protest with south korea, saying it's unacceptable. and prime minister shinzo abe has been consulting with officials over japan's stalled relations with south korea. executives at toshiba are bracing for impact. they say it's possible that part of their business could post billions of dollars in loss. to find out more, let's go to ai uchida. >> they are certainly scrambling and trying to figure out how to strengthen their capital base. we heard from them earlier about
possibly selling one part of their business. now we are hearing that they are considering postponing and separating assets. by doing that, the company aims to earn more than $2.6 billion. this plan comes after executives revealed they are considering spinning off their flash memory operation in central japan. toshiba plans to present it to its main lenders to ask for support for fundraising. the company's losses stem from the nuclear power operations in the u.s. the u.s. federal reserve chair janet yellen has given an upbeat assessment of the country and said a rate hike could come later in the year. they say that the country is getting closer to maximum employment and inflation is nearing the fed's goal. >> many of you would love to know exactly when the next rate increase is coming.
and how rates rise will depend on how the economy evolves over the coming months. >> yellen talked about the dollar after the speech. she said it's gotten stronger on expectations of higher spending proposed by incoming president donald trump. yellen added that the federal monitor will affect u.s. exports. well, with yellen's optimistic outlook for the american economy, that actually led to a jump in the dollar and this caused a rally on the tokyo stock market. the u.s. currency is bouncing back this morning. it is now trading at the mid-to upper 114 yen levels. and that's up more than 1.5% from wednesday's seven-week low. the prospect of u.s. interest rate hikes also lifted the dollar against the euro and yellen's view was bolstered by a strong december reading for u.s. consumer prices.
and tokyo share prices surged at the open on the weaker yen. the nikke 225 is currently at 19,079. the key index, as you can see, is above the 19,000 mark and that's after closing below it in the last two sessions. most sectors are higher except energy related ones. financials are leading the advance as u.s. treasury bond yields climbed. let's move to open markets at this hour across the asia-pacific. we're seeing australia's shares higher up .03. seoul's kospi is a touch in the negative. samsung's shares opened after rejection. wilbur ross was speaking at his confirmation hearing in the senate. he said he's against trade that
is to the disadvantage of the american worker and manufacturing community. >> china is the most protectionist country, very large countries. they have very high tariff barriers and very high nontariff trade barriers to commerce. >> ross added that unfair trade supported by government subsidies should be severely punished. he also said the north american free trade agreement with mexico and canada will be the first issue for the new administration to deal with. president-elect trump wants to review the agreement arguing it is destroying american jobs. british prime minister theresa may has defended the plan to leave the eu's single market a day after the brexit strategy. may was responding to criticism from opposition lawmakers during question time in parliament.
>> it won't necessarily damage the eu but it would certainly damage this country. businesses, jobs and public service. >> one of the key principles, key objectives is that we negotiate a free trade agreement with the european union that gives us the widest possible access for trading with and operating within the european union. >> may stressed that the impact on british companies and employment will be minimized. she added that britain will continue to welcome highly skilled workers who will contribute to its society and economy. the european commission's president says he spoke to may over the phone on the day of her brexit speech. jean-claude junker said that he will do everything to make sure that the talks end with a balanced solution. well, earthquakes routinely shake japan and a pair of strong
tremors last year left many people feeling rattled. japanese housing firms are coming up with new ways to make homes safer. nhk's john la due explains. >> reporter: this company made waves around japan. after the company released a video on the internet, people viewed it more than 100,000 times. it shows an experiment that recreates the shaking caused by major earthquakes in japan. even after it was repeated 60 times, the house showed no serious damage. the secret to the resilience was in the structure. it modified panels typically used in north american homes. the wood in this home is 6 inches wide, so it's thicker and stronger. other parts have also been fortified. the foundation contains twice the usual amount of reinforced steel and the roof has six inches wide composite panels.
company officials say they will use data from the shaking experiment to make sturdier structures. the house required more wood than conventional methods but it was only $3,000 more than a typical home in part because it's made of standard cuts of wood. >> translator: we believe this type of technology can be applied anywhere. we want to use it to develop our business globally. >> reporter: in the earthquakes in april last year, strong jolts continued for weeks. it was difficult for the residents to decide whether they should evacuate or not. another japanese housing firm has developed a system that could be of help. after an earthquake hits, it can tell homeowners where their houses are damaged. the key is this earthquake sensor. it's installed in the
foundation. this shows how the system might work after a big quake. the sensor detects and calculates the intensity of the shaking. then, it determines if there's damage to the house and displays the results on a panel. the data is simultaneously sent to the housing firm's headquarters. a team at the housing firm's head office then confirms the resident's safety. severely affected homes are given top priority and staff members rush to help. >> translator: when there's an earthquake, everyone's in a slight state of panic. but having objective information can help calm nerves. it's very important to provide information with evidence. >> reporter: earthquakes are an ever present risk for homeowners and the housing sector. improved safety measures could encourage peace of mind and help
iraqi forces are shifting their focus to retaking the western side of the city of mosul. the government says they are now in control of the eastern side after battling islamic state militants for months. the city is the largest stronghold in the country. prime minister abadi called it a marria major victory. the area is full of narrow streets that make the urban fighting for complicated. military officers say they are concerned militants could take civilians as human shields. another fear is the use of suicide bombers against the army. the militants are increasingly brainwashing or influencing boys to do the attacks. some under the age of 15. the international criminal court says that's a war crime. here is more from iraq.
>> reporter: this video shown last august in kirkuk in northern iraq shows a 14-year-old being apprehended. he was discovered wearing a bomb belt. >> translator: he was about to blow himself up when the police approached. >> reporter: two boys attempted this suicide attack. the police say they came from mosul like the refugees. islamic state group has been sending more and more youth into the battlefield. this video is believed to have been shot in syria. a boy climbs into a car loaded with bombs. >> translator: fellow islamic state comrades get into the car and carry out a suicide attack. this is the doorway to heaven. we should all meet there.
>> reporter: the car explodes in enemy territory. they are trying to avoid suicide attacks because the group is soldiers. a former islamic state group leader describes how they recruited the boys. >> translator: it used to be only adults who carried out suicide attacks. but after we lost some battles, we began recruiting boys. we convinced them that if they volunteered, they would go to heaven. >> reporter: every day, civilians fleeing the violence arrive in refugee camps. this 44-year-old used to live in the suburbs of mosul.
his neighborhood tried recruiting boys to fight the oncoming iraqi forces. >> translator: an islamic state soldier who came here tried to recruit my son. he is only 10 years old. >> translator: he would show me how to kill people. >> reporter: a top iraqi officer thinks islamic state may use more boys for suicide attacks. drugs and alcohol. i've seen boys 15 and 16 fighting and islamic state will probably continue to recruit even younger children. >> reporter: they are growing desperate. they use teenage suicide bombers, says that they are ready to drag out the fight to the bitter end.
nhk world, erbil, iraq. and in another move against the islamic state group, the russian military and turkish troops have conducted their first joint air strikes against the militants in northern syria. >> translator: the damage resulting from the air strikes against the islamic state militants shows that the joint actions were highly effective. >> he says that nine russian warplanes and eight turkish fighter jets have bombed one of the militant strong holds. the plane struck 36 targets. the united states and turkey have backed syrian opposition forces while russia supports bashar al assad. last month, turkey and russia brokered a truce in syria and are planning to lead peace talks next week. observers say moscow appears to be using the latest attack to call on the president-elect to fight against the islamic state group. the united states leads its own
coalition of countries fighting the china's foreign ministry has urged the united states not to allow a delegation from taiwan to attend president-elect donald trump's inauguration. >> reporter: responding to eye was not's announcement that it sent a cross-party delegation to fight a ceremony in washington. officials have pointed out that delegates of the territory have attended almost all past inaugurations, even after the u.s. broke off diplomatic relations with taiwan. but they are on edge because
they may view the one china policy which says taiwan is part of china. in other news, the first batch of the u.s. military's f-35 stealth aircraft has arrived in japan. the state-of-the-art fighter jets have never been deployed outside the u.s. mainland. two of the aircraft landed at a marine base in western japan. there's some of the advanced military equipment the u.s. defense department is deploying under washington's pivot to asia policy. a total of 16 of the jets will replace older ones at the base this year. but local people have voiced concern over their safety. an f-35 caught fire in the u.s. last year. they say it could increase the risk of an attack on the base. members of the association of southeast asian nations have staged a drill in thailand to improve medical cooperation during disasters. it's the first of its kind.
orie sugimoto has the latest. >> reporter: countries are now working together to get ready for the future disaster. they took part in the drill from the japan international cooperation agency, jica. participants share information. asia-pacific is still the world's most dangerous prone region and a well-coordinated response among its members ten years from now. >> translator: 70% of all disasters in the world happen in asia. the question is not whether each nation can create its own system
from scratch but how each can support other asean members. >> reporter: through close cooperation with the member block, asean is trying to overcome significant differences in the level of care when responding to disaster. nhk world. residents of tokyo are preparing for a drop in temperatures on friday as a cold mass approaches even bringing in snow. our meteorologist robert speta has the details in the world weather report. >> actually, low pressure is pushing overhead and it's bringing cloudy skies out across
the tokyo area. we're seeing this move back towards the north and it's bringing snowfall in western areas of hokkaido and once the areas push by, they are going to kick off the cold surge out of siberia. absolutely frigid temperatures right now in northeastern china, far eastern russia. with that, we're going to have this low develop behind it. you get this combination here. cold air coming in from the north, low pressure coming in from the west that will add in moisture and that means widespread precipitation across japan. even rain down towards the south where you can see in the forecast snow in western hanchu and even tokyo as we head into friday afternoon and through the afternoon hours, expecting snow out there. it won't be too intense in the downtown tokyo area. we could see heavier towards the mountain looking at snow and gusty winds with this next system heading into the week.
the temperatures will drop down on friday and at least warm back up once again by saturday. for now, thursday, partly cloudy skies. high of 10. bringing precipitation for you and also into beijing, i do want to know, look at the map here, minus 20 for your high. that is absolutely frigid out there in the capital of mongolia. one thing with that, it's pretty average for this time of year, in fact. definitely people are bundling up and they are used to it. as we take a look across europe, it's this storm system we are keeping an eye on. this has been bringing absolute rough weather across italy and extending back towards the balkan area. over 300,000 people are without power. traffic has been disrupted and a
lot of these buildings are very fragile. you can see the cracks in them there. you get heavy snow on top that. the risk of collapse and not to mention aftershocks are there, too. this is a combination of mother nature really throwing several hardballs at this area here in the southern central italy and definitely a lot of problems still to be added. temperatures are frigid of course, too. rome, right around the freezing area, if we look at the forecast, the low is dragging towards the east. the peninsula sees gusty winds out of this and separate storm systems have coastal precipitation. take a look at your temperatures. rome with a high of 12. thunderstorms in your forecast but north of that, subzero temperatures across the board here. and then we take a look here across the americas. we do have one low here in the deep south. it's working across the north and causing flooding there and into parts of texas. this one, if you have travel
♪ >> welcome to "in good shape." coming up -- just do it! why working out really is the best fat-killer. brittle bone disease. when bones are so fragile they keep fracturing. and periodontitis -- chronic gum disease can be a life threatening condition and here's your host, dr. carsten lekutat. dr. lekutat: hello and welcome to "in good shape." today, we are going to talk about heart disease, diabetes, premature birth, cancer, and rheumatism. that is here at the dental clinic. today, i'm going to talk with the dentist about white