Japan marks tsunami anniversary

Associated Press
A man offers prayers in front of the main entrance of Okawa Elementary School where 74 of the 108 students went missing after the March 11 tsunami in Ishinomaki, Miyagi prefecture, Japan, Monday, March 11, 2013. The two-year anniversary Monday of Japan's devastating earthquake, tsunami and nuclear catastrophe is serving to spotlight the stakes of the country's struggles to clean up radiation, rebuild lost communities and determine new energy and economic strategies.  (AP Photo/Shizuo Kambayashi)

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Japan observed a moment of silence on March 11 to remember the nearly 19,000 people who died in the massive earthquake and tsunami that struck two years ago. At a memorial service attended by Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko, attendees stood in silence at 2:46 p.m., the precise moment the 9.0-magnitude quake struck off northern Japan. The earthquake was the strongest recorded in Japan's history and unleashed a towering wave that wiped out entire communities. (AP)

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