2020 and the Year of the Rat could not be over soon enough, but with 2021 and the Year of the Ox soon upon us, we take one last look at the year that was.

For Japan, from a postponed Tokyo Summer Olympic Games to a new prime minister, it was a year of disruption and turmoil. And, of course, from the Diamond Princess cruise ship COVID-19 outbreak early on, to some 200,000 cases and more than 2700 deaths by year-end, Japan has not escaped an economic and health catastrophe now marked by more than 1.6 million dead globally — including more than 315,000 in the United States and more than 145,000 in India.

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