Gauteng and NW Province

Japan’s 1st anniversary of an earthquake and tsunami.

With a minute of silence, prayers and anti-nuclear rallies, Japan marked on Sunday the first anniversary of an earthquake and tsunami that killed thousands and set off a radiation crisis that shattered public trust in atomic power and the nation’s leaders.

A year after the magnitude 9.0 earthquake unleashed a wall of water that hit Japan’s northeast coast, killing nearly 16,000 and leaving nearly 3,300 unaccounted for, the country is still grappling with the human, economic and political costs.

Along the coast, police and coastguard officers, urged on by families of the missing, still search rivers and shores for remains even though the chances of finding any would appear very slim.

In the port of Ofunato, hundreds of black-clad residents gathered at the town hall to lay white chrysanthemums at an altar dedicated to the town’s 420 dead and missing.

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