Japan's draft of a new energy proposal calls for opening nuclear power plants that were shut down after the nuclear disaster in 2011. Greg Webb/IAEA/AP hide caption

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A Tokyo Electric Power Company official (center) stands with journalists at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant in Japan on Nov. 7. Cleanup efforts at the plant remain ongoing. Kimimasa Mayama/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Chinese blacksmiths in Nuanquan (Warm Spring) Town perform a folk custom called "making trees and flowers." They throw ladles of molten iron onto a wall, creating showers of sparks. The centuries-old custom originated with blacksmiths too poor to afford fireworks. In recent years, urban tourists have flocked to this once obscure town over the Chinese New Year holiday to enjoy local folk customs. Anthony Kuhn/NPR hide caption

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Red Guards — high school and university students — wave copies of Chairman Mao Zedong's Little Red Book during a parade in June 1966 in Beijing's streets at the beginning of China's Cultural Revolution. More than 1 million people are believed to have died during the decade-long upheaval. Jean Vincent/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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At a Beijing Courthouse on Sunday, activist Xu Zhiyong was sentenced to four years in prison. Goh Chai Hin/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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The Chinese and North Korean flags are seen attached to a railing as trucks carrying Chinese-made goods cross into North Korea on the Sino-Korean Friendship Bridge at the Chinese border town of Dandong on Dec. 18, 2013. Ties between the two longtime allies are strained after the execution of the North Korean official in charge of economic relations with China. Mark Ralston/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Chinese 100 yuan bank notes being counted at a bank in Huaibei, in eastern China's Anhui province, in 2013. Undeclared income — sometimes the proceeds of corruption, often just of unclear provenance — is estimated to make up a staggering 12 percent of China's GDP. AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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A makeshift headstone in the mass grave outside of San Joaquin Parish in the province of Leyte, Philippines. The Catholic parish has lost almost two-thirds of its congregation after Typhoon Haiyan swept through the area. David Gilkey/NPR hide caption

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Soldiers hold back people who are waiting to board a military aircraft in Tacloban. While the government, international aid groups and foreign militaries have rushed to the affected area, they are having trouble getting to the victims because of blocked roads, the U.S. commander on the scene told NPR early Wednesday. Edgar Su/Reuters/Landov hide caption

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Nie Haisheng, Zhang Xiaoguang and Wang Yaping aboard the Tiangong-1 space module in June. China is leading what some see as a space race among Asian countries: It has worked on a lunar rover, a space station and an unmanned mission to Mars. Wang Yongzhuo/Xinhua /Landov hide caption

itoggle caption Wang Yongzhuo/Xinhua /Landov

Hong Kong director Tsui Hark's latest film, Young Detective Dee: Rise of the Sea Dragon, just hit cinemas in Asia. Sam Yeh /AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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A woman surnamed Chu (left), 77, attends the hearing of a case against her daughter and husband in Wuxi, east China's Jiangsu province, on July 1. Chu's daughter has been ordered to visit her at least once every two months, in the first case under a new law to protect the elderly. AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Chinese authorities go to great lengths to censor the Internet and control social media. A 16-year-old was recently arrested under a new law that bars "rumormongering" online. Here, customers use computers at an Internet cafe in Hefei, China, in 2012. Jianan Yu/Reuters/Landov hide caption

itoggle caption Jianan Yu/Reuters/Landov