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World News Daily(2024-07-04) : Japanese Government Ordered to Pay Damages for Forced Sterilizations

Japanese Government Ordered to Pay Damages for Forced Sterilizations

Japanese Government Ordered to Pay Damages for Forced Sterilizations

Japan's Supreme Court has ordered the government to pay damages to 39 plaintiffs, victims of forced sterilizations under a 1948 eugenics law. This law, which remained in effect until 1996, permitted doctors to sterilize individuals to prevent "poor quality descendants." The government has acknowledged 16,500 forced sterilizations, including some on children as young as nine years old.

The court deemed the eugenics law unconstitutional, violating the right to equality and bodily autonomy. The government contended that the statute of limitations had expired, but the court disagreed.

These compensation claims followed a 2018 lawsuit by a woman who was sterilized at the age of 15 due to an intellectual disability. In 2019, the government issued an apology and offered lump-sum payments of ¥3.2 million per victim, but survivors sought additional compensation. High courts have awarded higher damages, ruling the statute of limitations unjust.

Similar measures in Germany and Sweden have resulted in apologies and compensation. This ruling underscores Japan's past mistreatment of individuals with disabilities and chronic illnesses.



UN Rights Chief Warns Against Scapegoating Migrants and Refugees

U.N. rights chief, Volker Türk, warns against scapegoating migrants and refugees. He urges voters to consider human rights during major elections in France, Britain, U.S., and Germany. Türk criticizes "politics of distraction" and calls for leaders to oppose hate speech. He highlights the danger of dehumanizing "the other," citing historical precedents. Türk advocates for "zero tolerance" of hate speech and denigration of minority groups.


UK Supreme Court Ruling Could Lead to Increased Lawsuits Against Water Companies Over Sewage Discharges

Water companies in the UK may face a surge of lawsuits over sewage discharges, following a Supreme Court ruling. The court allowed the Manchester Ship Canal Company to sue United Utilities for raw sewage release into the canal. This decision opens the door for adjacent waterway owners and the public to sue other utility companies.

Environmental groups welcomed the ruling, highlighting the financial and regulatory pressures on water companies for unauthorized waste discharges. The judges noted that better infrastructure investments could prevent such incidents.

United Utilities has about 100 outfalls along the canal, where treated waste is released. Raw sewage is also dumped during system overloads. The company argued that only regulators could act on spills, but the court disagreed.

Lawyers predict a wave of claims from affected parties, including swimmers, fishermen, and environmental organizations. The ruling could impact water companies' financial stability, potentially affecting consumer bills.

The Environmental Law Foundation praised the ruling as a victory for environmental justice. However, the ruling adds to the challenges faced by utility companies, already burdened with significant debt.



New Antarctic Ice Melt Discovery Alters Sea Level Rise Predictions

New Antarctic Ice Melt Discovery Alters Sea Level Rise Predictions

Scientists have discovered a new mechanism by which ice melts under Antarctica. Warm ocean water infiltrates beneath the ice, causing it to melt more rapidly. This phenomenon was not accounted for in previous models, leading to incorrect predictions about the rate of sea-level rise.

The critical area where the ice meets the sea, known as the grounding zone, is particularly vulnerable. The warm water melts this region, expediting the movement of ice into the sea. Even minor increases in ocean temperature can significantly accelerate this melting process.

The existing models overlooked this factor, which is why the ice is melting more quickly than anticipated. Incorporating this new information into the models will improve predictions of how rapidly sea levels will rise.

This new insight could alter our future planning strategies. Understanding the true rate of ice melt is essential for preparing for higher sea levels.


The astronauts of Shenzhou 18 have completed their second extravehicular mission.

The astronauts of Shenzhou 18 have completed their second extravehicular mission.

Astronauts Ye Guangfu, Li Cong, and Li Guangsu of the Shenzhou-18 mission completed their second extravehicular activity on July 3, 2024. The task lasted 6.5 hours, during which they installed a space debris protection device and inspected external equipment. The mission was successful, and the astronauts returned safely.

This mission, Shenzhou-18, will achieve several new breakthroughs in space technology:

  • The first in-orbit study of aquatic ecosystems, cultivating vertebrates in space.
  • The first in-orbit research on the function of plant shoot stem cells, exploring the mechanisms of plant evolution's adaptation to gravity.
  • Plans to conduct six cargo airlock extravehicular activities and two to three extravehicular activities.

Space debris protection device: A device designed to protect the external pipelines, cables, and critical equipment of the space station from impacts by space debris.


TikTok, originating from China's Douyin, has revolutionized American trends within just six years. Its influence extends across fashion, cosmetics, and food, igniting fast-paced fads such as "latte makeup" and "smash burger" tacos. Despite debates over national security that could lead to bans, TikTok's impact remains strong.

The platform's algorithm, though mysterious, serves as its "secret sauce," customizing content based on interests rather than just social connections. This change has democratized content creation, prioritizing authenticity over polished posts.

TikTok's influence also shapes personal styles and purchasing decisions, often marked with #tiktokmademebuyit. Despite criticisms of fostering addictive behaviors and superficial trends, its cultural impact is undeniable.

For many, TikTok is not merely a trendsetter; it is a liberator, enabling individuals to explore and express their unique styles freely. Whether enduring or fleeting, TikTok's trends mirror a broader cultural shift towards personalization and immediacy in consumer behavior.



Global Electric Vehicle Sales Predicted to Surpass 10 Million in 2024

Global Electric Vehicle Sales Predicted to Surpass 10 Million in 2024

Counterpoint Research predicts a milestone in 2024: over 10 million global BEV sales.

Bybit's forecast: Byd to top Tesla in BEV sales.

China's dominance: quadruple North American BEV sales by 2024.

By 2030, China's BEVs expected to surpass combined sales of North America and Europe.

Hybrid vehicles, including PHEVs and HEVs, will continue to lead in electrified segments.

BEV: Battery Electric Vehicle. PHEV: Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle. HEV: Hybrid Electric Vehicle.


Global Shift in Natural Gas Market and Its Implications

Natural gas is going global. Historically regional, it's now easier to ship worldwide due to liquefaction tech. This shift mirrors oil's global market.

Shehriyar Antia, from PGIM, notes smaller price differences between regions as shipping becomes simpler. Over a decade, liquefied natural gas (LNG) trade nearly doubled.

The U.S. leads in LNG exports, with Cheniere Energy a key player. Cheniere's capacity is massive, making it a top global exporter. Analysts see potential in its stock.

Demand for natural gas surges, especially in China and India, as they shift from coal. LNG is seen as a cleaner alternative, though its environmental impact is debated.

LNG's role in energy security is crucial, notably post-Russia's invasion of Ukraine. The U.S. has stepped in as a major LNG supplier to Europe.

In short, natural gas is evolving into a pivotal global energy source, bridging the gap between traditional fuels and renewables.


Hefei Fusion New Energy secures substantial funding, attracting attention to nuclear fusion technology.

Fusion New Energy, a company dedicated to nuclear fusion technology, recently secured a significant round of funding, elevating it to the status of a unicorn. China National Petroleum Corporation's Kunlun Capital and Hefei Science Island Holdings each invested 2.9 billion yuan, acquiring a 20% stake. The company's registered capital increased from 5 billion to 14.5 billion yuan.

Nuclear fusion, the process where light atomic nuclei combine to form heavier ones while releasing immense energy, similar to how the sun emits light and heat, is known as controlled nuclear fusion, or "artificial sun." It aims to harness nuclear fusion reactions for energy supply, regarded as an almost limitless clean energy source.

The global venture capital community has a strong interest in nuclear fusion, anticipating it to be the next arena for "thousand-fold returns." Despite numerous challenges, investors and entrepreneurs remain actively engaged, hoping to address the energy crisis and climate crisis, and to propel technological revolution.

Hefei, with its significant scientific infrastructure in the field of nuclear fusion, has become a global hub for nuclear fusion research. The rise of Fusion New Energy is not only a victory for capital but also a symbol of technological advancement.



OpenVid-1M: A High-Quality Dataset for Text-to-Video Generation

OpenVid-1M addresses two critical challenges in text-to-video (T2V) generation: the scarcity of high-quality datasets and the underutilization of text data. This innovative dataset, comprising more than a million text-video pairs, features 433K high-definition videos. A novel model, the Multi-modal Video Diffusion Transformer (MVDiT), improves video generation by more effectively integrating text and visual data. Experimental results demonstrate enhancements over prior methods.


X/Twitter Introduces 'Dislike' Button to Enhance Recommendation Algorithm

X/Twitter Introduces 'Dislike' Button to Enhance Recommendation Algorithm

X/Twitter plans to add a "dislike" button. This feature, confirmed by X engineers, aims to improve the platform's recommendation algorithm. Users can express disapproval, helping the algorithm gauge content quality. The button's introduction was supported by Elon Musk even before his acquisition of X. The exact design remains unknown, but the functionality is set to roll out soon.


Threads Nears First Anniversary with 1.75 Billion Monthly Users

Threads Nears First Anniversary with 1.75 Billion Monthly Users

Threads hits 1.75 billion monthly active users as it nears its first anniversary. Launched in 2023, Threads gained traction as an alternative to Elon Musk's restructured X (formerly Twitter). Despite X claiming 6 billion monthly users, Threads' focus on text-based content and integration with Instagram boosts its appeal.

Threads avoids political discourse, positioning itself as a less contentious social platform. Its features, like web apps and edit buttons, aim to enhance user experience without mimicking X's political news focus.


Video Game

Private equity giant殷拓 acquires game services company Keywords for £21 billion.

EQT, a European private equity giant, has acquired Keywords Studios for £210 million in cash. The offer is £24.50 per share, and Keywords' board recommends acceptance. Keywords Studios provides game development, audio, and art services for clients like Epic Games and Activision Blizzard.

Private equity giant: Investment firms that focus on acquiring corporate equity, enhancing value through management, and profiting from sales.

Keywords Studios: A company specializing in the gaming industry, offering comprehensive services from development to art.


The Opening of the Saudi Esports World Cup Draws Attention with Its Unique Trophy System.

The Opening of the Saudi Esports World Cup Draws Attention with Its Unique Trophy System.

The Saudi Esports World Cup kicks off with the elimination rounds beginning. The tournament's trophy system is unique, consisting of three parts and a totem.

The medal is called a "key," divided into inner and outer parts, triangular in shape, and detachable. The individual event trophy is circular with a base. The club trophy is cylindrical.

Winners place the inner part of the key in the center of the trophy, with the outer part embedding the totem. The defeated crush or bend their key, embed it with the totem at the base, and receive a defeated medal, engraved with their ranking. The champion can choose three defeated keys to embed at the base of the trophy, symbolizing the foundation.


MiHoYo's new game "Zenless Zone Zero" is a global bestseller, topping the App Store download charts in multiple countries.

"Zenless Zone Zero," the new title from miHoYo, is an urban action-adventure game. Pre-downloads have commenced, topping the free charts in 138 countries on the App Store. With over 40 million global reservations, the game is set to launch on July 4th.

miHoYo, known for its continuous innovation, has showcased its technical and creative prowess from "Genshin Impact" to "Zenless Zone Zero." Amidst a competitive gaming market, "Zenless Zone Zero" has garnered global attention thanks to its high-quality content and extensive promotion.

This move not only solidifies miHoYo's market position but also propels the gaming industry forward. Anticipation is high for the public testing of "Zenless Zone Zero," with expectations that it will become one of the hottest games of the year.


Young Chess Prodigy Joins England Women's Team

Bodhana Sivanandan, aged nine, from Harrow, London, will join the England Women’s Team at the Chess Olympiad in Hungary. She is set to become the youngest England player ever in any sport, being almost 15 years younger than her next teammate, Lan Yao, aged 23.

Bodhana discovered chess during the pandemic and has since won all three under-eight chess world championships two years ago—classical, rapid, and blitz. She practices an hour daily, with more sessions on weekends.

Malcolm Pein, the England chess team manager, describes her as the most remarkable prodigy British Chess has seen and is confident she will become a grandmaster. The current record holder, Abhimanyu Mishra, achieved this at 12, but Bodhana aims to break that record at 10.

Interest in chess among young people has surged post-lockdown, partly due to the Netflix show "The Queen’s Gambit." Bodhana's father, Siva, an engineering graduate, admits he is not good at chess, nor is her mother.



TikTok U.S. Live Sales to Surpass $5 Million in November

FastMoss reports: TikTok's U.S. live sales are projected to reach $5 million in November. By 2024, more than 2 million influencers are expected to utilize TikTok for product demonstrations. Beauty and personal care products are leading in sales. Daily e-commerce revenue has the potential to exceed $100 million.

GMV: Gross Merchandise Volume, the total sales value on a platform.


Celebrating 'Seven Samurai' at 70: Kurosawa's Timeless Epic

"Seven Samurai," Akira Kurosawa's 1954 epic, celebrates its 70th anniversary. Despite its age, the film remains vibrant, chronicling a village's decision to hire samurai to protect them from bandits. The film's rapid, dynamic action scenes reflect the intense battles led by its protagonist.

Kurosawa's masterpiece, a cornerstone of cinema, has profoundly influenced numerous filmmakers. Martin Scorsese and George Lucas hold it in high regard, while Alexander Payne considers it life-altering.

To mark its anniversary, a new restoration of the film is being showcased in theaters. While "Seven Samurai" isn't universally beloved, its influence is undeniable. It has inspired works ranging from "Star Wars" to "A Bug's Life."

Filmed over 148 days, it was the most expensive Japanese film of its time. Themes of sacrifice and community resonate deeply, set against the backdrop of postwar Japan. The film's tension is palpable not only in the battles but also in the interactions between the samurai and the villagers.

"Seven Samurai" continues to stand out. Its choreography, rain scenes, and the performance of Toshiro Mifune are particularly notable. However, the film's depth extends beyond these individual elements. Kurosawa's work, both hopeful and tragic, delves into universal truths about soldiers. Its quiet moments convey profound messages.



Newborn Chagas Disease Test Offers Early Detection

An innovative test for Chagas disease in newborns has been developed. Chagas disease, caused by the parasite Trypanosoma cruzi, is primarily transmitted through the bite of the triatomine bug. It affects millions, often in Latin America.

The new test simplifies diagnosis in infants. Traditional methods require blood samples and time-consuming lab work. This innovation uses a simple blood spot test, similar to newborn screening for other diseases. It's quick, accurate, and reduces the need for invasive procedures.

Early diagnosis is crucial. Chagas disease can lead to severe heart and digestive issues later in life. Detecting it early allows for timely treatment, improving long-term health outcomes.

This test marks a significant advancement in public health, particularly in regions where Chagas is prevalent. It streamlines the diagnostic process, making it more accessible and efficient.

In essence, this innovation brings hope to many families. It ensures that newborns with Chagas can receive treatment early, potentially saving lives and reducing healthcare costs in the long run.


Indonesia's Plan to Implement Nationwide School Lunch Program

Indonesia's Plan to Implement Nationwide School Lunch Program

Indonesia is planning a nationwide school lunch program. President-elect Prabowo Subianto aims to provide free meals to 78.5 million students. The objective is to reduce malnutrition and stunted growth.

Currently, Indonesian schools rarely prepare meals. Students usually purchase food from canteens or street vendors, or bring lunch from home.

Japan is offering assistance through the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). In September, JICA will host Indonesian officials in Tokyo and Nagasaki, sharing insights on Japan’s school lunch system and nutrition policies. Japan’s system started in 1889, focusing on nutrition and combating poverty. Lunches are designed by nutritionists, cooked on-site, and serve as educational tools for etiquette and healthy habits.

JICA is also considering sending experts to Indonesia’s new school meal organization. Discussions include support in areas such as hygiene standards and facility construction.

Indonesia is looking to Japan, China, and India for best practices. Prabowo visited a Beijing middle school in April. The Indian embassy noted Vice President-elect Gibran Rakabuming’s appreciation for India’s successful free school meals.

The program’s estimated annual cost is 450 trillion rupiah. The government plans to allocate 71 trillion rupiah for 2025.



NWSL Championship Game to be Hosted at CPKC Stadium

The NWSL championship game hits CPKC Stadium on Nov. 23. This $120 million venue, home to the Kansas City Current, stands as one of the world's first stadiums built specifically for a women's professional team. The Current's perfect attendance record continues, with every match sold out. Last year's championship saw a crowd of 25,011 at Snapdragon Stadium, where NJ/NY Gotham FC clinched their first title. This year, the Current face the Orlando Pride, both teams unbeaten and evenly matched.


Mark Cavendish Sets New Tour de France Stage Wins Record

Mark Cavendish, 39, broke the Tour de France stage wins record. His 35th victory surpassed Eddy Merckx's long-standing mark. Cavendish sprinted to victory in Saint Vulbas, stage five.

Last year, a crash ended his race prematurely. This year, he delayed retirement to chase the record. Battling illness, injuries, and depression, Cavendish feared his career might end without this win.

In 2021, he returned to the Belgian Quick Step team, winning four stages. Despite being left out of the 2022 Tour and facing contract issues, he joined Astana Qazaqstan for 2023.

Tour race director Christian Prudhomme praised Cavendish, calling him the "yellow jersey of the sprinters." Former teammate Geraint Thomas expressed joy for Cavendish's solo record.

Stage five, a flat 177.4 km route, offered Cavendish his best chance. He and his team had prepared specifically for this stage. Despite a few crashes and near-misses, the race proceeded without serious injuries.

Cavendish's victory, his 165th career win, solidifies his place as the Tour's greatest stage winner.



Benefits of Reducing Processed Meat Consumption

Reducing processed meat intake could have significant health benefits, according to a study.

Processed meats, such as sausages and bacon, are associated with health risks. This detailed and recent study suggests that reducing consumption of these meats might improve health.

The research, conducted over several years, involved thousands of participants. It found that those who consumed less processed meat had lower risks of heart disease and diabetes. These findings align with previous health guidelines recommending reduced consumption of processed meats.

In my opinion, simple changes in diet, such as cutting down on processed meats, can lead to noticeable health improvements. It's a straightforward way to potentially reduce health risks without complex interventions.

For those focused on health, this study offers clear advice: choose fresh meats or plant-based alternatives over processed options. It's a practical step towards better health.


Global Heatwave Drives Up Coffee and Commodity Prices

Global Heatwave Drives Up Coffee and Commodity Prices

Heat waves scorched Southeast Asia, pushing coffee prices up 20%. Vietnam, a top robusta producer, faces drought. London robusta futures hit $4,394 a tonne. Arabica also rose.

Rubber prices spiked due to heat damage. Osaka Exchange futures reached 360.90 yen per kilogram. Natural gas surged as air conditioning demand soared. Henry Hub futures jumped 48%.

Global temperatures hit records. May was the hottest on record. La Nina could bring more heat, keeping energy prices high.