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Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe expressed outrage and demanded Wednesday that Islamic State extremists release a Japanese journalist, as secret talks in Jordan sought the release of the Japanese and a Jordanian pilot also being held hostage.

The Japanese arm of said Tuesday it was "cooperating fully" with a police investigation into the sale of child pornography, after authorities reportedly raided its Tokyo headquarters.

A Japanese envoy in Jordan expressed hope that both Japanese hostage Kenji Goto and a Jordanian pilot held by Islamic militants will return home "with a smile on their faces," as questions rose Tuesday over the government's handling of the crisis.
Japan special envoy hopeful about release of hostage, pilot held by IS


More than 10,000 people are suing Japan's leading liberal newspaper over stories on Tokyo's system of wartime sex slavery, which they say have stained their reputation as Japanese nationals.

Japan sought help from Jordan and other countries Monday in its race to save a hostage held by the extremist Islamic State (IS) group, with no signs of progress on securing his release.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Sunday branded the murder of a Japanese hostage by Islamic State militants as "outrageous and unforgivable" and demanded the immediate release of a second captive, amid a tide of global revulsion.
Japan decries 'outrageous' hostage murder


Japan's prime minister said Sunday he was "speechless" after an online video purportedly showed that one of two Japanese hostages of the extremist Islamic State group had been killed, and he demanded the release of the other.
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Abe 'speechless' after video claims IS hostage dead


Japan's government is investigating a new message purported to be from the Islamic State group holding two Japanese hostages.
Japan condemns new video, not yet verifying authenticity


Japan promised Saturday not to give up "until the very end" on efforts to free two Japanese hostages threatened with beheading by Islamic militants demanding a US$200 million ransom, after a deadline passed with no word from the captors.

The deadline set by Islamist militants threatening to kill two Japanese men unless they were given US$200 million passed Friday, after one captive's mother made a desperate plea to save her son's life.

One is a freelance journalist respected for his reporting on refugees and children in war zones. The other is a man who seems obsessed with guns and went to Syria to train with fighters.
2 Japanese hostages: How their lives got intertwined


Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe admitted Wednesday it was a "race against time" to free two hostages snatched by Islamist militants who are demanding US$200 million for their lives.

The Islamic State (IS) group threatened to kill two Japanese hostages unless it receives a US$200 million ransom within 72 hours, but Tokyo vowed Tuesday it would not give in to "terrorism."
Tokyo won't budge on IS hostage threat


A worker at Japan's crippled Fukushima nuclear plant died Tuesday after falling into a water tank, the country's nuclear operator said, the second fatal accident to blight efforts to stabilize the tsunami-battered facility.
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