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With suicides topping 30,000 for the 12th consecutive year, the international community has not proved immune to the mental health challenges posed by this stressful country, and the prolonged economic downturn has only made problems worse.

Tokyo English Life Line, which has been providing free and anonymous English-language telephone counseling for more than 35 years, extends a helping hand to both expatriates and Japanese facing depression, suicide temptation, problems in cultural adjustment, relationships and the workplace, as well as health concerns.

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