• Kyodo

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Narita airport, Japan’s main international gateway, had a record 24.56 million passenger arrivals and departures in 2002, up 12 percent from a year earlier, immigration authorities said Tuesday.

The rise was partly attributed to the opening in April of an interim runway, they said.

The number of overseas departures may have increased because the impact of the September 2001 terrorist attacks in the United States has begun to wear off, they said.

The previous record was in 2000, when about 23.58 million passengers came or went.

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