December 30, Friday, 2022 (1:30 p.m.) Newsline read by Ms. Keiko Kitagawa

1. Former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has returned to power with a hardline coalition government after winning November’s national election.
2. Brazilian soccer legend Pele, a three-time World Cup winner, has died. He was 82. Pele, whose real name was Edson Arantes do Nascimento, was born in the southeastern state of Minas Gerais in 1940. He joined the national squad at the age of 17 and helped it win the World Cup for the first time in 1958. 3. Russian forces have unleashed another large-scale missile barrage at energy infrastructure and other targets across Ukraine, causing casualties and severely disrupting daily life amid the bitter winter cold.

December 29, Thursday, 2022 (1:30 p.m.) Newsline read by Mr. Yamaguchi Hiroaki

1. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has stressed his resolve to retake territory from Russia and help Ukrainians who have evacuated the country to return. Zelenskyy said Ukrainian forces have already managed to liberate more than 1,800 cities and villages from Russian occupation, and pledged to continue efforts to restore the country’s territorial integrity. The president said millions of Ukrainians have been displaced and found shelter abroad since Russia’s invasion began. He expressed gratitude to all the countries that have accepted and helped those people. Zelenskyy went on, “But we must reserve them as a part of Ukrainian society. We have to ensure their return.” 2. Battles for control of the Russian stronghold of Luhansk in Ukraine’s eastern region appear to be intensifying as Ukrainian forces try to take it back. Ukrainian forces are continuing counteroffensives to seize territories Russia is occupying. In the Luhansk region, Ukrainian troops appear to be stepping up their offensive to recapture Kreminna. 3. Railways, airports and expressways in Japan are packed with people heading off to hometowns and vacations during the year-end and New Year holidays.

December 28, Wednesday, 2022 (1:30 p.m.) Newsline read by Mr. Yamaguchi Hiroaki

1. Many people in Japan are heading overseas to enjoy their first year-end and New Year holidays since the country significantly eased border controls against the COVID-19 pandemic. 2. Sources say the Japan Football Association has decided to let men’s national team coach Moriyasu Hajime stay in his post. Moriyasu, 54, led the Samurai Blue in the FIFA World Cup in Qatar earlier this year. The team advanced to the last 16 after beating powerhouses Germany and Spain in the group stage, but failed to reach the quarterfinals as the team had hoped. 3. A government survey has revealed that airports across Japan are facing a severe shortage of security staff amid a recovery in air travel. A transport ministry survey shows that the number of security staff fell from 7,400 in April 2020 to 5,600 in September 2022. That’s reduction of 1,800 staff, or about 25 percent.

December 27, Tuesday, 2022 (1:30 p.m.) Newsline read by Mr. Yamaguchi Hiroaki

1. Indonesians have commemorated the 18th anniversary of the deadly Indian Ocean tsunami that struck on December 26, 2004. The disaster left more than 220,000 people dead or missing in a vast area spanning from Southeast Asia to East Africa. The tsunami was triggered by a massive earthquake that struck off the coast of Indonesia’s Sumatra Island. More than 160,000 people were killed in Aceh province, located on the northwest tip of the island. 2. Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba says his country wants an international conference on ending the war to be held at the end of February. Kuleba also suggested that Ukrainian soldiers will be trained outside the country to learn how to use the US Patriot air defense system. He said that the Patriot missile battery will be operational in less than six months and that Ukraine will do whatever it can to win the war next year. 3. Japan’s reconstruction minister Akiba Kenya has submitted his resignation over political funding irregularities and other issues.

December 26, Monday, 2022 (1:30 p.m.) Newsline read by Mr. Yamaguchi Hiroaki

1. Britain’s King Charles has delivered his first Christmas message to the nation as monarch. He remembered his mother, the late Queen Elizabeth II, who died in September, and expressed gratitude to public workers.
2. Some of Ukraine’s Orthodox churches held Christmas services on December 25 in a break with the Russian Orthodox tradition that observes Christmas on January 7.
3. China’s Zhejiang Province reported more than one million new coronavirus cases on Sunday as the number of the infections surge nationwide. Provincial health authorities say the number of new COVID cases is expected to peak before the New Year holidays. They say the daily tally could reach up to 2 million. But the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention says new COVID cases nationwide reached only 2,940 on Saturday.

December 22, Thursday, 2022 (1:30 p.m.) Newsline

1. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy made a direct appeal to Americans for more support during a surprise visit Wednesday to Washington. In a speech delivered before Congress, he thanked the US for continuing to provide military aid, which he called an investment in democracy. 2. The Japanese government has released a report on experts’ opinions about its handling of former Prime Minister Abe Shinzo’s state funeral in September. The government heard from 21 experts in various fields, including scholars of the Constitution and administrative law, between October and December. 3. Newly released tax records for former US president Donald Trump show that he paid no income tax in 2020, his final full year in office. The Ways and Means Committee of the US House of Representatives has released a summary report on Trump’s tax filings from 2015 to 2020.

December 21, Wednesday, 2022 (1:30 p.m.) Newsline

1. The White House says Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy is visiting Washington and holding a summit with US President Joe Biden on Wednesday. A source close to the Ukrainian government said it will be the first time for Zelenskyy to visit a foreign country since Russia began its attacks in February.
2. NHK has learned that police in Japan have raided a number of seafood traders who are suspected of selling clams illegally imported from North Korea.
3. US billionaire Elon Musk says he is stepping down as CEO of social-media giant Twitter. His resignation would follow a poll in which a majority of Twitter users voted in favor of him quitting the CEO job.

December 20, Tuesday, 2022 (1:30 p.m.) Newsline

1. Kyiv authorities illuminated a Christmas tree in the Ukrainian capital on Monday evening amid continued power outages caused by Russian attacks. Standing in a city center square, the tree is 12 meters tall, less than half the usual height, and the daily hours of illumination have been shortened.
2. Japan’s central bank has surprised markets by adjusting its monetary policy, allowing long-term interest rates to fluctuate in wider band. The Bank of Japan believes the new range will improve market functions. The yield for the 10-year Japanese Government Bond will now be allowed to move in a range of around plus and minus 0.5 percent. The earlier range was plus and minus 0.25 percent.
3. A food maker in northern Japan is rushing to meet demand for “datemaki” rolled omelets. They are part of the colorful “osechi” delicacies traditionally served over the New Year holiday. The company in Hokkaido plans to make more than 3,000 of the distinctive cog-shaped rolls in time for New Year.

December 19, Monday, 2022 (1:30 p.m.) Newsline

1. Argentina has won the men’s soccer World Cup in Qatar by defeating France in the white-knuckle penalty shootout of the final. It was the South American team’s first title in 36 years, and its third overall. The two powerhouses clashed at Lusail stadium on Sunday. Argentina is third in the FIFA rankings while defending champion France is fourth. 2. Britain and the United States are stepping up their military aid to Ukraine as Russia continues missile attacks on Ukraine’s cities and infrastructure.
3. Record snowfalls for a 24-hour period have been observed in Fukushima Prefecture, northeastern Japan, and Niigata Prefecture, on the Sea of Japan coast. Weather officials are urging caution for the possible impacts of accumulated snow and icy roads on public transport as well as blackouts and avalanches.

December 16, Friday, 2022 (1:30 p.m.) Newsline read by Mr. Yamaguchi Hiroaki

1.The UN General Assembly has adopted for the 18th straight year a resolution urging North Korea to immediately return all foreign nationals it has abducted. The assembly adopted the resolution without a vote on Thursday. It has been submitted by the European Union every year. More than 60 countries, including Japan and South Korea, co-sponsored the resolution this year. 2. In a major milestone in efforts to revamp Japan’s defense strategy – the Cabinet is set to approve three key documents which reimagine how the nation should be able to defend itself and provide a plan to pay for some big changes. The National Security Strategy and the National Defense Strategy outline a new policy that would give Japan the ability to launch counterstrikes – only under specific circumstances. They would be limited to self-defense and would never be preemptive.
3. Experts tasked with assessing the coronavirus situation in Tokyo are calling on residents to be on the alert for a resurgence of infections. They say the number of new daily cases may double from the current figure to reach nearly 30,000 in mid-January.