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    People observe a moment of silence at 2:46 p.m. (0546 GMT), the time when the magnitude 9.0 earthquake struck off Japan's coast in 2011, atop of a seawall at Taro district in Miyako, Iwate prefecture, Japan, March 11, 2016, to mark the fifth-year anniversary of the March 11, 2011 earthquake and tsunami that killed thousands and set off a nuclear crisis.

    Japan Marks Anniversary of 2011 Tsunami Victims With Moment of Silence

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    At 2:46 p.m. local time (06:46 GMT), the exact moment that the earthquake struck Japan five years ago, millions of the Japanese citizens observed a moment of silence, commemorating the victims of the disaster.

    TOKYO (Sputnik) — Japan on Friday marked the fifth anniversary of a massive earthquake and tsunami that hit the country's northeast coast with a moment of silence, local media reported.

    On March 11, 2011, a 9.0-magnitude earthquake struck Japan, which was followed by a massive tsunami. About 16,000 people were killed and over 2,500 people are still on the missing after the natural disasters. The incident also crippled the Fukushima nuclear power plant, with radiation leaking into the atmosphere, soil and sea.

    According to The Japan Times newspaper, at 2:46 p.m. local time (06:46 GMT), the exact moment that the earthquake struck Japan five years ago, millions of the Japanese citizens observed the moment of silence, commemorating the victims of the disaster.

    The ceremony in the country's capital of Tokyo that commemorated the victims of the disaster was attended by Japanese Emperor Akihito, as well as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

    Some 175,000 people, evacuated due to the 2011 natural disasters and Fukushima accident, still cannot return home, the newspaper reported.

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    Tags:
    tsunami, Fukushima nuclear disaster, Emperor Akihito, Shinzo Abe, Japan
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