The capital Tokyo was one of several cities of Japan shaken by dozens of subsequent aftershocks – some 15 minutes apart – culminating in several large shocks on both coasts of Honshu as the weekend started.
The Japanese government’s top spokesman, Yukio Edano, said the country was sending troops to the quake-hit areas as the self-defence force prepared 300 planes and 40 vessels for rescue operations.
Millions of homes were left without power and rescue services were dealing with numerous call-out following falling debris across Tokyo and other cities.
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