Japan quake: Images of then and now

One year ago, a massive earthquake and tsunami struck off the coast of north-east Japan. Thousands of people lost their lives and many more were injured as torrents of water swept through coastal cities, towns and villages.

Twelve months on, the Japanese people are making progress in repairing the damage to their country and rebuilding their lives. Scroll through the 10 images below, dragging the slider at the top of each one to see to see how some of the worst affected areas looked at the time of the quake and how they have recovered.

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After
Before

Several waves engulfed the city of Ishinomaki, Miyagi prefecture, killing hundreds. By January, much debris had been cleared. Pictures: AFP/Getty

After the quake

Before

Now

After

Several waves engulfed the city of Ishinomaki, Miyagi prefecture, killing hundreds. By January, much debris had been cleared. Pictures: AFP/Getty

After the quake

Before

Now

After

Large parts of the city of Kesennuma, Miyagi prefecture, were destroyed. The difficult task of rebuilding the community remains. Pictures: AFP/Getty

After the quake

Before

Now

After

The city streets of Miyako, Iwate prefecture, were flooded in March last year. Some appeared back to normal in last month. Pictures: Reuters

After the quake

Before

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After

Miyako's port area was devastated and few of the fishing community's boats survived. The port now appears free of debris. Pictures: Reuters

After the quake

Before

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After

A Miyako employee captured the city swamped with water in 2011. Last month, cars and buses were once again filling the streets. Pictures: Reuters

After the quake

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After

Waves breached the sea wall in Miyako's port, carrying boats, houses and cars inland. Traffic has now returned to the coastal road. Pictures: Reuters

After the quake

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After

Thousands were killed in the city of Ofunato, Iwate Prefecture, and few buildings were left standing. Rebuilding there continues. Pictures: AFP/Getty

After the quake

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After

Shattered houses, broken furniture and mangled cars littered Ofunato's streets. All appeared to have been cleared in January. Pictures: AFP/Getty

After the quake

Before

Now

After

A catamaran, seen perching on two-storey building in Otsuchi, Iwate prefecture, in March last year, has now been removed. Pictures: AFP/Getty

After the quake

Before

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After

A plane, cars, trucks and other debris were dumped by the tsunami at Sendai Airport. It re-opened days later for emergency flights. Pictures: AFP

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