Toyama

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Emperor Akihito delivers his last birthday speech next to Empress Michiko at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo, Japan. Photograph: Kimimasa Mayama/EPA

More than 82,000 well-wishers paid their respects to Japan’s Emperor Akihito who turned 85 on Sunday, his last birthday celebration at Tokyo’s Imperia(...)

Japan’s prime minister Shinzo Abe: plans  to halt the population decline at 100 million (it is  currently 127 million). Photograph: Jiji Press/AFP/Getty

For years Japan has been anxiously mulling whether to import more foreigners to stem a shortage of workers. That debate seems to have been partially r(...)