Japan

Shinto priests walk out from a gate after they administered a Shinto rite "Kiyoharai" on the first day of the three-day spring festival at the controversial Yasukuni shrine in Tokyo on April 21, 2015. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe made a symbolic donation to the Yasukuni war shrine, but stopped short of visiting in person -- a move that would have infuriated neighbouring countries. Abe donated a sacred "masakaki" tree to coincide with the start of the three-day spring festival at the shrine in central Tokyo

Yoshikazu Tsuno/AFP

Shinto priests walk out from a gate after they administered a Shinto rite, “Kiyoharai”, on the first day of the three-day spring festival at the controversial Yasukuni shrine in Tokyo on Tuesday

A flight crew member attaches a Japanese national flag on the airplane for Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko's special flight to Palau before it's take off at Haneda international airport in Tokyo

Issei Kato/Reuters

A flight crew member attaches a Japanese national flag on the airplane for Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko’s special flight to Palau before it’s take off at Haneda international airport in Tokyo

Japan Airlines Co. (JAL) group companies' new employees practice before releasing paper planes during an initiation ceremony at the company's hangar near Haneda Airport in Tokyo, Japan

Kiyoshi Ota/Bloomberg

Japan Airlines Co. (JAL) group companies’ new employees practice before releasing paper planes during an initiation ceremony at the company’s hangar near Haneda Airport in Tokyo, Japan

Members of Japan's Self-Defence Force's honour guard prepare for a ceremony for U.S. Army General Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, at the Defense Ministry in Tokyo

Toru Hanai/Reuters

Members of Japan’s Self-Defence Force’s honour guard prepare for a ceremony for U.S. Army General Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, at the Defense Ministry in Tokyo on Wednesday. 

A cosplayer poses for a portrait at the cosplay area during the Anime Japan 2015 Expo in Tokyo, Japan. Cosplay (Costume play) is a subculture that sees participants role play as a specific character of their choice. Many of the popular characters are sourced from manga, anime, comic books, video games and cartoons, often the cosplayer will take on the body language, clothing and mannerisms of the character. AnimeJapan 2015, is one of the largest anime festivals in Japan, offering visitors entertainment such as stage performances, screenings, workshops, cosplaying areas, and a chance to buy exclusive anime themed goods

Chris McGrath/Getty Images

A cosplayer poses for a portrait at the cosplay area during the Anime Japan 2015 Expo in Tokyo, Japan. Cosplay (Costume play) is a subculture that sees participants role play as a specific character of their choice. Many of the popular characters are sourced from manga, anime, comic books, video games and cartoons, often the cosplayer will take on the body language, clothing and mannerisms of the character

UKEDO, JAPAN - MARCH 11:  Police officers observe a minute of silence on March 11, 2015 in Ukedo, Fukushima prefecture, Japan. On March 11 Japan commemorates the fourth anniversary of the magnitude 9.0 earthquake and tsunami that claimed more than 18,000 lives, and subsequent nuclear disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant.

Ken Ishii/Getty Image

Police officers observe a minute of silence on March 11, 2015 in Ukedo, Fukushima prefecture. Japan commemorates the fourth anniversary of the magnitude 9.0 earthquake and tsunami that claimed more than 18,000 lives, and subsequent nuclear disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant. 

Sadao Kimbara rides on a Honda motorcycle with a sidecar he made out of an oil barrel as his grandson Rui smiles in the sidecar in Ome, outskirts of Tokyo...Sadao Kimbara (L) rides on a Honda motorcycle with a sidecar he made out of an oil barrel as his grandson Rui smiles in the sidecar in Ome, outskirts of Tokyo February 14, 2015. Saudi Arabia's oil exports have risen in February in response to stronger demand from customers. As OPEC's top producer battles for market share Reuters photographers around the globe have been photographing oil barrels to document how they are utilised once the fuel has been used.

Toru Hanai/Reuters

Sadao Kimbara rides on a Honda motorcycle with a sidecar he made out of an oil barrel as his grandson Rui smiles in the sidecar in Ome, outskirts of Tokyo 

Construction cranes are reflected in mirrors at a company compound in Tokyo

Thomas Peter/Reuters

Construction cranes are reflected in mirrors at a company compound in Tokyo

A diver feeds red heart-shaped squid meat (C) to rays at a feeding session ahead of Valentine's Day at the Sunshine Aquarium in Tokyo.

Yoshikazu Tsuno/AFP

A diver feeds red heart-shaped squid meat (C) to rays at a feeding session ahead of Valentine’s Day at the Sunshine Aquarium in Tokyo.

Well-wishers wave Japanese flags to celebrate Japan's Emperor Akihito's 81st birthday at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo, Tuesday, Dec. 23, 2014. Emperor Akihito said he  ardently  hoped Japan will strive hard as a peaceful country, as he celebrated his 81th birthday Tuesday ahead of the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II next year.

Eugene Hoshiko/AP

Well-wishers outside the Imperial Palace in Tokyo wave Japanese flags to celebrate Emperor Akihito’s 81st birthday

A diver wearing a Santa Claus costume feeds a sunfish to attract visitors at the Hakkeijima Sea Paradise aquarium in Yokohama, suburban Tokyo

Tsuno Yoshikazu/AFP

A diver wearing a Santa Claus costume feeds a sunfish to attract visitors at the Hakkeijima Sea Paradise aquarium in Yokohama, suburban Tokyo

.A couple sits under a street lamp in a park near Christmas lights in central Tokyo, December 12, 2014.

Thomas Peter /Reuters

A couple sits under a street lamp in a park near Christmas lights in central Tokyo on Friday

An H2-A rocket carrying space explorer Hayabusa2, lifts off from a launching pad at Tanegashima Space Center in Kagoshima, southern Japan, Wednesday, Dec. 3, 2014.  The Japanese space explorer was launched Wednesday on a six-year roundtrip journey to blow a crater in a remote asteroid and collect samples from inside in hopes of gathering clues to the origin of earth.

Kyodo News/AP

An H2-A rocket carrying space explorer Hayabusa2 lifts off from a launching pad at Tanegashima Space Centre in Kagoshima, southern Japan. The Japanese space explorer was launched on Wednesday on a six-year round-trip journey to blow a crater in a remote asteroid and collect samples from inside, in hopes of gathering clues to the origin of earth.

Bank of Japan governor Haruhiko Kuroda answers questions on the country’s economy during a press conference at the BOJ headquarters in Tokyo.

Kazuhiro Nogi/AFP/Getty Images

Bank of Japan governor Haruhiko Kuroda answers questions on the country’s economy during a press conference at the BoJ headquarters in Tokyo

Workers wearing protective gear rest at the Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant, Okuma, Fukushima prefecture, northeastern Japan

Shizuo Kambayashi/EPA

Workers wearing protective gear rest at the Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant, Okuma, Fukushima prefecture, northeastern Japan

APEC 2014 Summit in Beijing, China...epa04483563 Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (L) shakes hands with China's President Xi Jinping (R), during their meeting at the Great Hall of the People, on the sidelines of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meetings, in Beijing, China, 10 November 2014. APEC is an inter-governmental forum with 21 member countries and regions, that seeks to promote sustainable growth and economic integration, and reduce trade barriers across the Asia-Pacific region. Jinping and Abe met for the first time to face to face talks, since they came into office, on the sidelines of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit in Beijing, China, on 10 November 2014.  EPA/KIM KYUNG-HOON / POOL 0

Kim Kyung-Hoom/EPA

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (L) shakes hands with China’s President Xi Jinping (R), during their meeting at the Great Hall of the People, on the sidelines of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation meetings, in Beijing, China. 

Japanese lawmakers follow a Shinto priest (R) during a visit to the controversial Yasukuni shrine

Kazuhiro Nogi/AFP

Japanese lawmakers follow a Shinto priest as part of a visit by more than 100 lawmakers to a Tokyo shrine condemned by China and Korea as a symbol of Japan’s militarist past 

JSDF soldiers conduct rescue operations on Mount Ontake, which erupted on September 27, 2014 and straddles Nagano and Gifu prefectures in central Japan...Japan Self-Defense Force (JSDF) soldiers conduct rescue operations on Mount Ontake, which erupted September 27, 2014 and straddles Nagano and Gifu prefectures in central Japan, in this October 7, 2014 handout photograph released by the Joint Staff of the Defence Ministry of Japan. Two more bodies were found on Mount Ontake on Tuesday, nearly a week and a half after the eruption that killed at least 51 people, Japanese media reported. The search continues for 10 people still missing in what has become the nation's worst volcanic disaster in a century.

JSDF/Reuters

Soldiers from the Japan Self-Defense Forces conduct search operations on Tuesday on Mount Ontake, which erupted on September 27. Sixteen people are still missing following the eruption of the volcano, which straddles Nagano and Gifu prefectures in central Japan.

Rescue work resumes at Japanese volcano...epa04422786 A handout aerial picture dated 27 September 2014 taken by Japan's Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport Chubu Regional Development Bureau shows the eruption of the Mount Ontake, between Gifu and Nagano prefectures, in central Japan. On 29 September 2014, five more survivors were found in critical condition near the summit of the volcano. 10 people were confirmed dead late 28 September and more than 60 injured.

EPA

An aerial photograph shows the eruption of Mount Ontake in central Japan. More than 30 hikers were found dead on Sunday on the mountainside, a day after the eruption sent plumes of smoke hundreds of metres into the sky. 

"Butch," the first customer at SoftBank Corp.'s Omotesando store displays his newly purchased Apple Inc. iPhone 6 for a photograph outside the store in Tokyo, Japan, on Friday, Sept. 19, 2014. Apple stores attracted long lines of shoppers for the debut of the latest iPhones, indicating healthy demand for the bigger-screen smartphones.

Yuriko Nakao/Bloomberg

“Butch,” the first customer at SoftBank Corp.’s Omotesando store displays his newly purchased Apple Inc. iPhone 6 outside the store in Tokyo, Japan, on Friday