South Korean Foreign Minister Yun Byung-se (left) speaks with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at their meeting in Tokyo. The two countries are marking the 50th anniversary of establishing relations. While leaders in both countries stressed the importance of the ties, a bitter history continues to strain the relationship. Issei Kato/AP hide caption

itoggle caption Issei Kato/AP

Yae and Ren were married during Tokyo's Rainbow Pride Weekend in April. One Tokyo ward, or neighborhood, has recognized same-sex marriages, becoming the first place in Japan — or anywhere in East Asia — to do so. Elise Hu/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Elise Hu/NPR

At Slush Asia, a new tech festival held in Tokyo in late April, the scene and the energy resembled a small-scale South by Southwest Interactive. Elise Hu/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Elise Hu/NPR

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in Boston on Monday. Dominick Reuter/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Dominick Reuter/AFP/Getty Images

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe with U.S. Defense Secretary Ash Carter earlier this month in Tokyo. Abe's visit to the U.S. this week features an agreement for the Japanese military to have a more active role. Franck Robichon/AP hide caption

itoggle caption Franck Robichon/AP

Liu Jianchao (second right), China's assistant foreign minister, shakes hands with Japanese Deputy Foreign Minister Shinsuke Sugiyama (second left) during a meeting in Tokyo, Japan on Thursday. Liu Tan/Xinhua/Landov hide caption

itoggle caption Liu Tan/Xinhua/Landov

Hawaii's Honouliuli Internment Camp held thousands of prisoners of war and hundreds of Japanese-American citizens during World War II Courtesy of Japanese Cultural Center of Hawaii hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of Japanese Cultural Center of Hawaii

Misao Okawa, the world's oldest living person, poses for a photo with her son Hiroshi Okawa, 92, (left) and other family members and friends on her 117th birthday celebration at Kurenai Nursing Home in Osaka, Japan. Buddhika Weerasinghe/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Buddhika Weerasinghe/Getty Images

A valve on the Musashi. Courtesy of Paul Allen hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of Paul Allen