A Japanese volcano that was used as a lair by James Bond’s nemesis has erupted, sending a plume of smoke thousands of metres into the air.
Shinmoedake erupted for the first time since April on Friday, less than a week after a strong earthquake shook the west of Japan.
Television images showed smoke and ash rising into the air above peak of the volcano, which was used as the setting for Ernst Stavro Blofeld’s secret lair in the 1967 film You Only Live Twice.
Rock was thrown around 1,100 metres (3,609ft) from the mountain, according to TBS television.
The volcano is located in Kagoshima Prefecture, on the island of Kyushu, 616 miles from the Japanese capital of Tokyo.
It is believed to have formed between 7,300 and 25,000 years ago.
In the film, MI6 agent Bond – played by Sean Connery – is dispatched to Japan to investigate after American and Soviet manned spacecraft mysteriously disappear whilst in orbit.
The Shinmoedake crater acted as a hidden base, from which Blofeld launched his own spacecraft to intercept and capture the US and Soviet shuttles.
It erupted last year and has done so on several occasions this year, putting residents in the mainly rural area on notice with restricted access to the 1,421m (4,662ft) mountain.
A large eruption on 6 March saw rocks and ash thrown to a height of 4,500m (14,764ft).
Japan has 110 active volcanoes and monitors 47 of them at all times.
In 2014, 63 people were killed on Mount Ontake – the most fatalities from a volcanic eruption in Japan for nearly 90 years.
On Monday, an earthquake of 6.1 magnitude struck Osaka – Japan’s second largest city – killing five people including a nine-year-old schoolgirl.