The city of Kobe on Tuesday marked the 28th anniversary of the magnitude 7.3 earthquake that took 6,434 lives, with its first ceremony in three years held at a pre-pandemic scale.

Residents and victims' families observed a moment of silence at 5:46 a.m., the same time the Great Hanshin Earthquake struck the port city in Hyogo Prefecture and neighboring areas on Jan. 17, 1995.

The ceremony, which came after memorials were reduced in scale or canceled in 2021 and 2022, saw participants light thousands of candles forming "1.17, 1995," the date of the disaster, and this year's message, "musubu," meaning to be bound together.