April 5 - Doraemon, a robotic cat from the 22nd century, has been recruited to help Tokyo's bid to win the 2020 Olympics and Paralympics.
Doraemon is a Japanese manga series created in 1969 by Fujiko Fujio which later became an anime series.
The Doraemon character, which was appointed the nation's first anime ambassador by Japan's Foreign Ministry in 2008, embodies Japanese core values such as respect, friendship, which also are the Olympic values, Japanese officials claim.
"The global popularity of Japanese anime as represented by Doraemon is a powerful reminder of Japan's ability to inspire young people," said Masato Mizuno, the chief executive of Tokyo 2020.
"We are delighted to have our resourceful friend Doraemon on our bid team."