File photo of victims observing a minute of silence to remember the earthquake and tsunami at a shelter in Kamaishi, Iwate prefecture.

 
File photo of victims observing a minute of silence to remember the earthquake and tsunami at a shelter in Kamaishi, Iwate prefecture.
Victims of the March 11 earthquake and tsunami observe a minute of silence at a shelter in Kamaishi, Iwate prefecture, in this April 11, 2011 file photograph, marking the one month anniversary of the deadly quake which triggered the tsunami and nuclear crisis in Japan. Weeks before Japan's first national election on December 16, 2012, since the earthquake, none of the contenders has managed to win the hearts, and votes, of those hardest-hit by the disaster - with many feeling let down by the entire political class. Volunteers and donations had poured in after the magnitude 9.0 quake off the northeast coast of Japan's main island Honshu unleashed a deadly tsunami that killed nearly 19,000 and triggered reactor meltdowns at the Fukushima nuclear plant. But 20 months later, residents of towns and cities ravaged by the country's worst disaster in generations say the nation's biggest rebuilding effort since the aftermath of the World War Two has slipped off the political agenda. REUTERS/Toru Hanai/Files