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Japan tsunami: nation falls silent five years on

Japan marks five years since an offshore earthquake spawned a monster tsunami that left about 18,500 people dead or missing along its northeastern coastJapan paused on Friday to mark five years since an offshore earthquake spawned a monster tsunami that left about 18,500 people dead or missing along its northeastern coast and sparked the worst nuclear disaster in a quarter century. Emperor Akihito, Empress Michiko, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and other participants at a national ceremony in Tokyo bowed their heads along with residents across the affected region at 2:46 pm (0546 GMT) — the exact moment on March 11, 2011 the magnitude 9.0 quake struck under the Pacific Ocean. The waves also swamped power supplies at the Fukushima Daiichi plant, causing reactor meltdowns that released radiation in the most dangerous nuclear disaster since Chernobyl in 1986.

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