Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's ruling coalition won a comfortable majority in the upper house of parliament.
Traditionalists in Japan who have long opposed the idea of a woman assuming the nation's Chrysanthemum Throne now fear that the emperor stepping down will damage the standing of the imperial system. Julian Ryall reports.
Referring to his weakening health, Japan's revered Emperor Akihito has hinted at his desire to give up his official role as the nation's monarch. This has set off a number of questions about what happens next.
With geopolitical tensions running high in the Asia-Pacific region, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe makes a controversial ritual offering to Tokyo's equally contentious Yasukuni Shrine. Julian Ryall reports.
Not afraid to buck the trend, Yuriko Koike has earned a number of nicknames en route to becoming Tokyo's first female governor. But can popular support make up for a lack of allies? Martin Fritz reports from Tokyo.
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