eastern part of north korea. officials say they landed in the sea after flying about 200 kilometers. they're monitoring the situation. japanese defense ministry officials say one of the projectiles was a missile. the u.s. and south korea began the biggest ever joint military exercise in march. it practiced drills. the north launched shortened mid-range ballistic missiles towards the sea of japan on march 10th and 18th. the north also conducted a set of military drills under the supervision of leader kim jong-un. the state-run korean central television reported on sunday that the north's ground, naval and air forces took part in drills bedn a scenario of landing south kea. >> translator: it cannot be denied that north korea may further engage in provocative actions in defiance to increasing pressure from the international community and to the ongoing u.s.-south korea joint military drills.
>> nakatani said japan will continue to collect and analyze information and monitor the situation while working closely with the united states and south korea. u.s. president obama has arrived in cuba at the start of a three-day trip. it's the first time in 88 years that an incumbent u.s. president has visited the country. obama arrived at the airport on sunday afternoon local time. he was accompanied by his wife michelle and their two daughters. obama made a speech to u.s. embassy staff in the capital, havana. >> this is our very first op, so this is a historic visit. and it's a historic opportunity to engage directly with the cuban people. >> the obama family took in the old part of the capital. residents came out of their homes and watched. >> translator: i saw president obama. i'm happy and excited.
>> obama met the roman catholic cardinal who along with pope francis mediated secret negotiations between the two governments. the president is scheduled to meet cuban leader raul castro on monday. they hope to start a new era in relations between washington and havana. diplomatic ties were severed in 1961 following the cuban revolution and were restored last july after obama changed u.s. policy. dozens of activists were detained just hours before obama's arrival. many of the activists are the wives of political prisoners. they protest outside a church in havana every sunday. their repeated arrests have been criticized by human rights groups in the united states and europe. the u.s. has eased economic sanctions on cuba since restoring diplomatic ties. some american critics are against deeper relations,
however, citing cuba's failure to improve human rights. chinese police have reportedly detained a renowned columnist. jia jia writes in magazines and newspapers. his lawyer says he was detained while about to board a flight to hong kong. media in hong kong say jia may have been under investigation in connection with an online news site that carried an anonymous open letter. the message criticizes president xi jinping's policies and calls for his resignation. sources close to the chinese columnist say he had nothing to do with the letter's authorship or its publication. authorities have reportedly detainedeveral other people connected with the site. beijing has been stepping up censorship and it's rare to urge the resignation of the country's top leader. turkey's government says it
has identified the suicide bomber who killed four people in a shopping district on saturday. officials say he was affiliated with the islamic state militant group. the interior minister says dna tests show he was from a border near syria. the bomb killed several foreign tourists and wounded 39 other people. nobody has claimed responsibility. turkey's police are searching for three other islamic state militants who they say plan more suicide attacks. they've released the names and photos of the suspects. turkish president erdogan has spoken for the first time about the istanbul attack. >> translator: the terror groups and the forces behind them will, in the end, be defeated. our security forces are and will be working hard to prevent acts by such terrorist organizations and will continue to do so.
>> further threats forced the cancellation of a soccer game in istanbul on sunday two hours before it began. 200,000 police officers have been mobilized around turkey to patrol busy shopping districts. helicopter crash in indonesia has left 12 people dead and one missing. the army helicopter burst into flames sunday after crash landing in a farming area on the outskirts of poso on sul wa si island. troops have en sent the ea to fit militas loyal the islamic statgroup. officis think d weathe might ve broug it down an air force transport plane killed 120 people when it went down in a residential area last june. another military aircraft crash left four people dead last month. some members of a
pro-democracy group in hong kong plan to form a political party. the group decided to take part in politics to help realize a more democratic society. >> it's the time for us to change our position and to find our role to contribute to let our hong kong to be a better place. >> group leader joshua wang in other members are establish the new party next month and field candidates in the legislative council election scheduled for september. scholarism is one of the two primary hong kong groups which helpeds ises in 2014 blocking major roads for over two months. in a campaign known as the umbrella revolution they demanded democratic elections, but they were ultimately forcibly dispersed by police. the asian development with a bank and a new china-led international lender are exploring ways they can help each other. adb president spoke at a forum
in beijing on sunday. he answered a question from his counterpart of the asian infrastructure investment bank who was in the audience. >> translator: we hope to conduct joint financing with the ad what dyou thinabout itas prident? >> oft the media wants to repo us asival or competitors, bn reali we are re frnds. and we h ver good discuions in past yes, tee orour time and we agreed to the importance of infrastructure building. >> he suggested he wants to begin joint financing based on mutual agreement with t aaib as soon as possible. he added that the launch of the china-led bank has given his institution motivation to improve its own operations. the china-led investment bank opened its doors in january with 57 members, mainly from asia and
europe. the bank hopes to begin extending loans this year to fund infrastructure projects in asia. people in japan recently marked the anniversary of one of the worst natural disasters in its history. it's been five years since a powerful earthquake and tsunami ravaged the coast. on the other side of the world a group of students in egypt showed their support for recovery efforts through music. nhk world reports. ♪ ♪ >> reporter: the idea of music has a better language is playing out here through these egyptian students. they're learning of the japanese song "flowers will bloom" and are moved by the tune and lyrics. ♪
>> reporter: the original song was recorded in japan one year after the disaster as a message of support and hope. since then, the song has been performed around the world as a show of compassion. and now it's being sung in cairo thanks to a student who has deep connections to japan. this 17-year-old was living in japan when disaster struck. her parents were teaching arabic at a university and she was in elementary school. the house was far away from the epicenter but they still felt the jolt. >> translator: i remember, we didn't think it was such a huge earthquake at first. >> translator: yes. we all thought it was just an ordinary quake.
>> reporter: there have been photographs recovered so they could be returned to the people in the area. >> translator: i was so worried wondering what might have happened to the owners of those photographs. >> reporter: her family returned three years ago but she still felt a need to continue volunteer work. they wrote encouraging messages to people in the region and recorded "flowers will bloom." ♪ >> translator: i hope everyone in the affected region feel that people around the world still care about them. ♪ >> reporter: she has found a way to continue supporting people in the affected region and making
sure the message of hope and resilience lives on. nhk world, cairo. ♪ [ applause ] japan's prime minister shinzo abe says the self-defense forces must prepare for new duties based on security laws set to take effect nt week. abe was speaking at the graduation ceremony of the national defense academy in tokyo on monday. the security legislation enacted by the diet in september will go into effect on tuesday next week. it would allow japan to exercise the right to collective self-defense and expand the sdf's role abroad. >> translator: preparation under the assumption of any and all situations, including protecting
the troops of other countries, is necessary for possible new duties based on security laws, which will take effect this month. >> meanwhile, compared to last year, there's been a doubling in the number of defense academy graduates declining to join the sdf. they acknowledged their right to pursue different careers, but maintains that it isn't part of new laws. last month saw a rise in japanese tourists heading to south korea. officials say a big reason was an easing of political tensions between the countries. south korean tourism authorities say about 144,500 japanese visited in february. that's up 1.3% from a year earlier, and a first increase in three and a half years. the year on year numbers have been on a downward trend since september 2012. the officials say talks between the country's leaders in november and an agreement on the issue of those rerred to as
comfort women at year end will factor behind the large number of travelers. the authorities also cited an end of the outbreak of the coronavirus that erupted last may. japanese officials want to see more fuel cell vehicles on the country's roads. they want to promote the eco friendly cars so that their numbers range to 800,000 by 2030. fuel cell vehicles run on electricity generated by hydrogen that reacts with oxygen in the air. they emit no carbon dioxide or other exhaust gases. two major automobile factories have launched sales in japan. there are currently 500 of the vehicles. the ministry officials believe the key for getting more motorists to switch is lower prices and building more hydrogen filling stations nationwide. they want the vehicles to be priced under $27,000. the average cost of today's popular vehicles.
fuel cell vehicles now carry price tags exceeding $63,000. they also aim to quadruple the number of filling stations to 320 over the next decade. they will consider easing regulations on the stations' operation and installation. a japanese software program triumphed over rivals in the bored game go at the university of electrocommunications in tokyo on sunday. the software beat facebook's dark forest in the final at an international tournament. 31 teams from six countries and regions took part in the event. zen has won the contest twice before. dark forest was making its debut. facebook began developing the program last year. >>ranslato it's t first victy in twoars. i surpred byhe nber of participants and the progress
they've made. >> he says all the programs have improved since last year's tournament. a group of japanese researchers and experts from it firms now want zen to become a program that can outplay the google program alpha go. alpha go can learn from its mistakes and search for solutions. it made headlines earlier this month by beating a south korean grand master. people on japan's northern islander of ha kaiedo are hoping the bullet train link from tokyo will bring a big increase in tourists. travel companies have created activities that take tourists up close to culture, preparing for the new arrivals. >> reporter: visitors from south korea make their way to the counter of a sushi restaurant in a port city here.
they get some pointers from the chef, then try putting them to use. >> relax. >> reporter: managers at a local hotel are trying the hands-on experience. they want to give guests a taste of ha kaiedo's seafood and insights into the ancient cuisine. >> translator: very tasty! >> japan good memory. >> reporter: nearly 350,000 foreigners make their way here every year. most come in tour groups from mainland china and taiwan. the new bullet train that starts landing march 26 will make it easier for people to come on their own. >> i think it's useful because it will sharply cut the time. >> reporter: many firms are
exploring ways to capitalize. staff at this tokyo-based travel agent sell tour packages to hot spots all over the world. now they are setting their sights on this area. >> translator: fishermen have started offering cruise tours. they are using fishing vessels, which is unique. >> translator: making it easier to travel is the key to expanding the market for tourist activities. so we're taking a close look at ways we can take advantage of the new line. >> reporter: managers at the agency dispatched one of their staff to check out the potential. she visited an inn that's more than 80 years old. the chef wants to offer workshops where guests can try making the soba buck wheat
noodles. >> translator: the noodles should be as thin as this coin. >> reporter: the chef used the coin to let the guests better grasp exactly how thin the noodles should turn out. >> translator: well done! . see, you touched the coin. that means it's thin enough. >> translator: i should have worked a bit harder. delicious! it's a very special experience. the chef speaks a little english, which i think is enough. it's even better than being fluent because it makes the experience more authentic for tourists. >> translator: the growing interest is thanks to the new line. i want tourists to see and experience what we can offer. >> reporter: business owners
here say the train link can't come soon enough. travel agencies are also keen to reap the rewards. both are poised to do so as tourist numbers to japan hit record highs. the wooden houses of coato are a unique feature of the nation's capital. they've helped create the city's distinctive low rise character. now they're under threat. the next report looks at a movement to try to save them. >> reporter: this american likes kyoto so much he bought one to live in. his home is about a hundred years old. >> every day we spend time in different rooms experiencing like what's great about each one. in the winter we spent much time
in this room keeping warm, in the spring and in the summer we open up the windows and enjoy the weather outside. but we love it. >> reporter: these days a growing number of people are interested in buying the old homes either to live in themselves or to convert into accommodation for visitors to the city. >> translator: we have received inquiries from all over the world. taiwan, singapore, the u.s., including some multi-millionaires. >> reporter: however, the owners are often unaware of the demand and are selling them for redevelopment. as of 2010 there were around 48,000 old houses left here. but every year over 500 of them fall to the wrecking ball. this woman is one of those who worry about the trend. she runs an npo dedicated to preserving the houses.
>> translator: if kyoto is to remain kyoto we must pass on the culture of wooden architecture. >> reporter: after consulting, some owners have decided to preserve their homes. the owner of this row of five houses was approached by a construction company that wanted to buy the land. for a moment she considered selling out but kojima paid a visit and made her realize the building's many original features. >> translator: i was told the tiles and fixtures were valuable. i started to think, i would rather restore these and rent them to people who can appreciate them. >> translator: we want to encourage more people to carefully maintain their matia or to hand them on to new owners. if people understand this, then we can preserve the feel of the
city. >> reporter: her npo is working with kyoto city to encourage owners not to destroy their machia. cherry blossoms are coming out in central tokyo. more on that and the world weather. >> people in tokyo are enjoyin calm cditions and, yes, cherry blossoms are starting to bloom. we have some footage. the japan meteorological agency announced that cherry blossom season has started in tokyo today. unusually warm weather is waking up the blossoms five days earlier than normal. many gathered at parks to see the first flowering of cherry trees in the city. so pretty. >> temperatures will be quite warm tomorrow and wednesday. that could speed up the blooming of the flowers.
starting thursday things will be cooling down. 10 degrees for the high and things will be much cooler than normal as we go into the weekend. i think we can enjoy the cherry flowers for a long period of time. according to the japan weather association, it looks like the cherry blossoms are starting to come out earlier than normal in many areas. for example, it will be around april 5th here, around six days earlier than average and may 2nd in sapporo. across southern china the skies are gray. a low front is causing heavy rainfall over the past 24 hours. 120 millimeters of rain has f l fallen and more heavy rain is on the way. probably an additional 120 millimeters expected. that could raise the potential of flooding as well as landslides. temperatures on the warmer side, 15. 14 in beijing with partly sunny
skies on your tuesday. across north america spring has just begun. wint winter like conditio are continuing. freeze warnings are posted from the carolinas into oklahoma and winter storm conditions are occurring across the new england states and up into new brunswick. an additional 25 centimeters of snow and strong winds are expected to continue into your monday across the north. and then we have another low coming into the west coast of the u.s. so that will cause heavy rainfall from northern california u into the nohwestern areas. so heavy rain is expected, and we may see some hail and strong winds as well. in the central portions of the u.s. it's dry, but there is a critical fire weather risk across oklahoma and kansas and surrounding areas. temperatures will be warmer than normal in denver at 23 degrees expected on monday and very chilly for this time of year, only 13 degrees for the high in
atlanta with a low of only 2 degrees. snow is expected in new york city as well as toronto on you monday. across europe there is a potent winter storm affecting the iberian peninsula causing a risk for severe weather. on sunday, hail and heavyain has been reported in spain. the system will likely head towards italy and the balkan peninsula going into the next couple days. watch out for heavy rainfall and strong gusts as well. now, temperatures will be as follows. 19 in rome. going into wednesday it will be around 10 degrees. 9 degrees expected in burling on monday and in double digits in paris as well as lonneddon. all right. here is your extended forecast.