thanks for joining us here on nhk "newsline." i'm james tengan in tokyo. executives at ford motor are aiming to get a jump on their rivals to dominate the next generation of transport. they've unveiled plans for vehicles for driver services. without steering wheels or pedals. officials say they'll make the vehicles available foror commercial services in 2021 before offering them to
consumers. they're p planning to increase staff at ford's research center in california. and they're aiming to have about 90 prototype vehicles ready for road testing next year. designers and engineers at automakers worldwide are hard at work on driverless technology. transport authorities are hofuful thnew w hi-tech vehicles will ease congestion d reredu accidents. gole has announclans to market its o driverles vecle. rusa say ias used an irann airaseor theirst timeoare out air strik ainst militants in ria. it aears to be aesture agait the u. and other countries supporting anti-government forces in syria. russia's defense ministry said on tuesday that russian long range bombers and tactical bombers flew from the hamadan air base in western iran. the ministry says the bombers
struck targets linked to al sham. it said late last month it was cutting ties with al qaeda. russian media reports say this is the first time that the russian military has used an iranian military base to launch air raidss in syria. russian officials say flying bomber f from iran will save fuel. > t the e head of iran's supreme national security council said they will enenjoy cooperation a share their facililities. he indicated that iran will work with russia and syria until they destroy the islamic state militants and other groups. a spokesman for the u.s. state department has been trying to reae sure his country's allies they are committed to nuclear deterrence. the obama administration is
always looking for ways to move toward a nuclear-free world, h said. but sees deterrence for the u.s. and its friends. a recent media report says president obama may declare no first use of nuclear weapons. and senior u.s. government officials and allies including japan are expressing concern. >> we're going to continue to assess whether there are additional steps that we can take to reduce the role of security weapons and nonproliferation regime further. but as i said, we're always going to maintain a credible deterrent for our friends s and our allies. >> toner didn't say whether u.s. leaders are debating a no first use declaration. some remarks that u.s. vice president joe biden made during a blistering attack on candidate donald trump are raising eyebrows amongst japanese officials. biden was campaigning for hillary clinton when he blasted
trump's foreign policy proposals. biden criticized trump's suggestion that south korea and japan obtain enuclear weapons rather than having the u.s. >> does he not realize we wrote japan's constitution? >> it's highly unusual to say americans authored japan's constitution. japanese diplomats in washington say it was strongly led b by american authorities but japanese lawmakers thoroughly debated and approved it. the officials say that japan's constitution makes no mention of nuclear weaponons. instead the country's ban is guided by the three non-nuclear principles and the terms of the nonproliferation treaty.
checking now on the markets, tokyo recovered from two days of losses on a bounce in the dollar against the end. our business reporter ramin mellegard has more from the tokyo stock exchange. >> thank you. tokyo markets were boosted not only by a weaker yen but also a jump in crude oil prices. let's have a look at the closing levels for wednesday, august 17th. the nikkei closing at 16,745. topix 1,311. up 0.97%. now, energy related shares gained as crude oil prices rose to fresh one-month high. inpex as well as petroleum exploration were amongst the biggest gainers. the dollar rebounded from below the hundred yen levels. and we saw nintendo ending the day higher.
sharp saw a big jump. investors continued buying shares following the recent takeover by taiwan's precision industry. many market players also waiting the release of the minutes from the last u.s. federal reserve policy meeting. looking for any hints of a rate hike. i'm ramin mellegard at the tokyo stock exchange. moving on to other markets in the asia pacific region. in china the government on tuesday approved the long anticipated hong kong stock trade link. investors' reactions were mixed. the composite ended up barely changed. hong kong had earlier gains extending losses to a second day. many investors had already priced in the stock link approval. seoul's kospi was down 0.2%. sydney touched a touch higher supported by higher oil prices.
the indonesian market was closed for a holiday. the number of foreign visitors to japan in july hit a new record for a single month. an increase in port calls for cruise ships from china helped push up the figure. officials at the japan national tourism say nearly 2.3 million foreign travelers came to japan last month. that's up almost 20% from a year earlier. visitors from mainland china topped the list. their number was up about 27%. south koreans came in second, up 30%. total numbers for the first seven months of this year rose almost 27% to slightly more than 14 million. the highest ever for the period. electronics makers at nec have created a plastic that looks like lacquer ware. they say it can be mass produced in various shapes.
universisity scientists and a lacquer ware artist collaborated on the project. while conventional plastics use petroleum materials, nec says it can help combat global wawarmin. nec says it developed a technique to achieve the shiny black luster and properties that approximate those of high grade lacquer. the plastic can be used for vehicle interiors, home appliances, and other products. the invention comes at a time when lacquer ware is enjoying international popularity. they hope the plastic will find commercial use by 2020. on day 12 of the rio olympics, japan's synchronized
swimmers took to the pool and hopes of a medal were high. in the duet, they finished the technical round in a disappointing fourth place behind russia, china, and ukraine. but they pulled off a stunning performance in the free routine and leapfrogged ukraine to claim the bronze. the coach is known as the mother of japanese synchronized swimming. she led japan to olympic medals in six consecutive olympics. but four years ago in london she was coaching the chinese. they won a silver and a bronze. and japan left empty handed. now she's back with japan and so are the medals. moving on to some drier action, japan faced singapore in table tennis. in the first singles match team captain ai fukuhara narrowly missed a win with the game count
2-3. but in the second singles, kasumi ishikawa got a straight win with aggressive attacks. 15-year-old ito easily won the last singles match straight. the japan team won the bronze medal defeating singapore 3-1. ito became the youngest medalist in table tennis. people watching in ito's hometown of iwata erupted with emotion too. >> translator: i was so moved. their power was really inspiring. >> translator: it was incredible. i don't know what to say. >> the home fans in rio had something to cheer about as konsesan punched his way to
brazil's first ever boxing medal. and here's the medals table at this stage. the u.s. is way out in front with 28 golds. japan is in tenth place with seven. now outside the competition venues there's been more controversy. some athletes say workers at the olympic village have been stealing valuables from their rooms. and now bulgarian athletes have been accused of beating up female cleaning staff. the athletes tried to bar the three cleaners from their room. they say the aththletes noticed their mobile phones and other items were missing. the cleaners told police they were trying to service the room when they were attacked. delegates from australia and denmark earlier said thieves had taken their laptops and team shirts. the britishsh team has taken th precaution of banning housekeepers from their rooms.
some baseball gear owned by japanese player ichiro suzuki is now part of history. he was using it as he notched his 3,000th hit earlier this moont. he reached the milestone in a game against the colorado rockies. items including his uniform and spikes are being shown at the national baseball hall of fame in cooperstown, new york. they're part of the whole new ball game exhibit. baseball fans from japan and the u.s. took photos of ichiro's gear. >> i can't believe it got here so fast. it was great that he donated it to the hall of fame. he could have kept it. i mean, it's wonderful that he could share it with all the fans. we could all enjoy that. >> translator: as a japanese, i'm proud of ichiro and i feel that the people in the u.s.
respect him. >> we're very excited to get them up so quickly. ichiro accomplished this tremendous feat of reachingg 3,000 hits in the major league in the united states. it's not something a lot of people have done. >> the baseball hall of fame and hum museum contain artifacts including a uniform of babe ruth. it draws 300,000 visitors every year. life can be tough in south africa's townships. now some young people are outlining a new future for themselves. they're working on a cartoon depicting different faces of africa. here's the report from capetown. ♪ >> reporter: jabu's's jungle, a ne amated ctoon serers made
in sth africa is the story of jabu, a boy from a very poor neighborhood w who finds a magi drum whichch allowss him to o a ouound the continenent >> hello. can yoyou help us geget across river? >> of course i can, jabu. >> reporter: the studio where jabu is made is in capetown. the lead an mimateanimator. most cartoons shown here are from japan and other countries. but his aim is to create one that is uniquely african. >> i think it's the time now to start showing youngster or people in africa that you can make animation as well.
>> reporter: the story's set in a township during the apartheid area when south africans were forced to leave an area segregated from white people. even today most township residents still live in poverty. where i am standing now is typical township houses which are included in jabu's's storie. jabu's jungle depicts daily life in these communities. despite their psical hardships, the children are cheerful and find ways to play. in the cartoon they are always positive and have energy. some of the young animators who work on jabu's's jungles come fm the township. the studio works with a local ngo. he and his colleagues train
young people as interns. it's a great opportunity as half the youth from the townships are jobless. >> if i learn and i become realally goodd which i know i'l become, then obviously i'll be able to be an animator. >> hey. hit me. hey. hit me. >> he performs the voice part for jabu. he's also from the township. he says until recently he couldn't imagine life outside his community. but through his role as the main character, he's discovering the whole of africa. >> i like to be a novel writer having ann opportunity like thi inspires me to shoot higher and to some day become successful.
>> my dream is to see all those kids doing what they love. i also want to have more animations in africa, especially in south africa with people, students who can find jobs. >> reporter: by thinking and acting locally, the creator of jabu's jungle are encouraging africa's young people to have big dreams. nhk world, cape town. artysans around japan are already preparing if for the 2020 games. they are preparing kimonos for the games. we meet the weaver who designed for canada and who found inspiration in the northern lights.
>> translator: the sounds of a weaver's loom, the echo of his skill. ogawa is the master of this weaving technique that's been handed down for nearly eight centuries. ogawa specializes in hatakaobi sashes featuring this design. he's b been reck niogognizeby t japanese gernmenent as a a livi national treasure. every obi he weaves contains just these four elements. >> translator:r: you could say follow a standardized motif. my job is to figure out the best colorsrs a and sizing to repres canada. it's difficult and challenging at the same time.
>> reporter: ogawa has been weaving for more than 60 years. this is the first time he's using conventions of this weaving to excesepress a countr. >> translator: the canadian flag is red and white so i'd like to emphasize these colors in my design. >> reporter: one by one he sets nearly 6,000 threads into the loom. in hatakaori, misplacing even one thread would effect the overall design. then he starts weaving following a rhythm that has become second nature through years of practice.
ogawa has depicted canada using only four patterns. this represents the country's flag. inside are c colors w with cana natural beauty. he captured aurora borealis from clean to scarlet like the changing colors of the seasons. a closer look reveals the extent of ogawa's artistry and skill. he's included the traditional elements in hues of red. the surface becomes luminous. the silk threads are delicate. ogawa adjusts the tension depending on humidity and temperature conditions. when there's not enough tension, the pattern becomes distorted. and when compared to one woven correctly, it appears dull.
if the tension is too tight, the pattern looks flat. ogawa makes minute adjustments using instincts he has acquired over time. finally it's time to unveil the completed obi. it's paired with the kimono representing canada that features motifs such as the maple leaf. the ensemble was presented do the canadian delegate. >> i think it conveyed a lot of respect for canada and created the four seasons of canada. >> reporter: ogawa's illustration shows how an artisan can use just four elements to create infi k knit
design. >> translator: it can lead to something new. >> reporter: a japanese weaver has devoted his life to centuries of keeping arteistry alive. now he's bringing it to the world. students from the atomic bomb cities of hiroshima and nagasaki have delivered a speech calling for the abolition of nuclear weapons. 22 senior high school students attended the international meeting on tuesday in geneva, switzerland. >> i wish to take this opportunity to ask all of you to listen to the voices of shi back
sha.a. >> she believes if young people like herer and her colleagueuesn hands, something can be done to prompt people around the world to pave a path for abolishing nuclear weapons. after the speech the students and an atomic bomb survivor visited the u.n. office for disarmament affairs to hand over the letters to u.n. officials. the students also handed over petitions signed by over 125,000 people seeking the abolition of nuclear weapons together with paper cranes. it was a hot and breezy day here in tokyo as chong fu made its way through northern japan. jonathan oh has the details. what does chong su mean? >> it's the name of a flower in cambodia. it's really bringing a lot of rainfall, in fact. this is something we'll be watching very closely as we go
throughout the next 24 to 48 hours. it was hot in tokyo because of the clear skies that resulted from areas south of the system. but as a severe tropical storm, yes, it gained in intensity throughout the day yesterday as it crossed over into hokkaido, it's bringing a lot of rainfall. look at this informatation. some places in 12 hours received 181 millimeters of rainfall. that causes flooding problems. that was part of the story. iwate seeing around nine meters in terms of wave heights. this system will now continue to impact japan through the overnight hours into thursday. notice the speed it is moving. to the north in 60 kilometers
per hours. but we still have to go through the next 12 to 18 hours dealing with the impacts. then things should start to tapeper off.f. lolooking atrainfafall, topping to 150 millimeters inn hokkaido as we gogo throughout the day o thursday. wave heights continue to be as high as nine meters on the pacific side. and then up to 144 kilometers per hour gust through the next 72 hours or so. now, that's not the only part of the story. i mentioned those warm temperatures. as the system takes the clouds with it, we're seeing clear skies. over in gunma we made it to nearly 40 degrees on wednesday. and even into the westernrn portion of japan, in aichi prefectu prefecture, mid-30s. also the korean peninsula seeing high temperatures. we will continue to see this
dominant influence at least for another day. and then we should see a little bit of a change from there afterwards. but stillll seeingg those clear skies in place. meanwhile toward thehe southern portion of china, there's a tropical depression. taipei, hong kong also seeing showers. low to mid-30s for tokyo. scattered showers in tokyo as the heating creates instability. speaking of stability, let's look at north america. on monday the same system that caused problems toward louisiana also produced this tornado near indianapolis as it went throughout the day on monday. the system is wiggling its way towards the east. we still see a lot of instability associated with this. high pressure dominating the western portion of the united states. that's going to keep things quite dry and quite hot. look out for wildfire concerns
through wednesday. quick look at europe. we're seeing massive thunderstorms as heavy rain takes place into the western portions of europe. and showers coming on shore from the west. we'll be seeing scattered rain as we go throughout the day on wednesday into the united kingdom. hope you have a good day wherever you are. here's your extended outlook. for your thoughts and comments just visit our website
hello there. i am catherine nicholson with your headlines. 82,000 people in california are on alert to evacuate as wildfires are to the east of los angeles. turkey afterls in turkey conditionally released 30,000 convicts apparently to make space in prison for the thousands of people detained in the wake of last month's failed coup attempt. tears and anger at the olympics. the french.