Japan

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