Tokyo stocks rose 0.91 percent Thursday, snapping three days of falls after US share prices and the dollar rebounded.
The Nikkei 225 index closed 121.25 points higher at 13,459.71 while the Topix index of all first-section issues gained 0.22 percent, or 2.48 points, to 1,116.51.
The rises in Tokyo followed a rebound on Wall Street led by energy companies benefiting from an oil price spike as the West mulls a possible attack against Syria for its alleged use of chemical weapons.
But "the Nikkei's rebound lacks strength as investors continue to stay on the sidelines as they wait for the US and its allies' action against Syria," said Yoshihiro Okumura, general manager for research at Chibagin Asset Management.
"Amid uncertainties surrounding Syria, the rising oil price is a negative factor, as it leads to higher costs, especially for corporations like power companies," he told Dow Jones Newswires.
The dollar was at 97.80 yen in Tokyo afternoon trade, up from 97.71 yen in New York overnight and 97.13 yen in Tokyo Wednesday.
The Indian rupee, which fell nearly four percent to a new record low of 69.22 to the dollar on Wednesday, was at 67.70.
Suzuki Motor, with a heavy exposure to India, soared 2.18 percent to 2,104 yen, rebounding from a 5.4 percent fall on Wednesday.
The oil sector outperformed after US oil futures rose to a nearly two-year high driven by speculation over potential supply disruptions.
Oil explorer Inpex jumped 5.20 percent to 454,500 yen and oil refiner JX Holdings was up 1.34 percent to 528 yen.
Power companies were sharply lower with Tokyo Electric Power, hit by high oil prices while struggling to contain a crisis at the crippled Fukushima nuclear power plant, fell 2.54 percent to 497 yen.