Wed, May 21, 2014 - Page 7 News List

World News Quick Take

Agencies

JAPAN

Fukushima system down

The operator of the crippled Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant yesterday said it had again suspended a trouble-plagued system used to clean radiation-tainted water. Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO) put its Advanced Liquid Processing System (ALPS) on standby mode after it found processed water was cloudy instead of clear. Higher-than-usual levels of calcium were believed to be the cause, but why the levels had become elevated was not known, a TEPCO spokesman said. ALPS has three lines — one of which has already been stopped for the same problem, while the third is not functioning properly. It is unknown when the company will switch the system back on. ALPS is used to clean the radiation-tainted water that has been used to cool reactors at the plant, where Japan’s devastating 2011 quake-tsunami disaster sparked meltdowns.

CHINA

Man stabs schoolchildren

A knife-wielding attacker went on a rampage at a primary school yesterday, wounding eight schoolchildren, with one seriously hurt, state media reported. The 35-year-old suspect, a man surnamed Chen, rushed into the school in Macheng in the central province of Hubei and began slashing at students with a kitchen knife, the Xinhua news agency reported, citing the local government. Police apprehended Chen at the scene, the report added, and the eight injured pupils were hospitalized. China has seen several violent attacks against children in recent years, including a spate of five incidents in 2010 which killed 17 people — 15 of them children — and wounded more than 80. In March last year, a man killed two relatives and then slashed 11 people, including six children, outside a school in Shanghai.

JAPAN

McCartney sick, cancels tour

Paul McCartney is canceling his entire tour of the country because of illness. The former Beatle got a virus last week and canceled several appearances, apologizing online to his fans. Now, his organizers say he is not well enough to do any of the concerts, including the one set for today at the Nippon Budokan, where the Beatles performed during their first tour of the country in 1966. The official site of McCartney’s “Out There Japan Tour 2014” said his doctors are ordering him “complete rest.” McCartney is still scheduled for a concert in Seoul on May 28 at the Jamsil Sports Complex Main Stadium, followed by 19 US performances. Two weekend concerts in Tokyo and another in Osaka on Saturday were canceled.

SOUTH KOREA

Elder Kim brother surfaces

The elder half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has surfaced in Indonesia, dismissing speculation that he might have been hiding following the execution of his uncle, a TV report said yesterday. Kim Jong-nam was sighted at an Italian restaurant run by a Japanese businessman in Jakarta on May 4 with two women, cable news network YTN said. YTN quoted one of Kim’s friends as saying the 43-year-old had been living well, shuttling back and forth among Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia and France, despite the shock execution of his uncle, Jang Song-thaek, in December last year. Kim Jong-nam was reportedly close to Jang, once the North’s unofficial No. 2 and political mentor of leader Kim Jong-un. Kim Jong-nam was once considered heir apparent, but fell out of favor with his father following a botched attempt in 2001 to secretly enter Japan and visit Disneyland. He has since lived in virtual exile, mainly in Macau.

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