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Rina Kawaei, 19, and Anna Iriyama, 18, were meeting with fans in the northern city of Takizawa on Sunday when a man lunged forward and slashed them.
They sustained cuts on their hands and heads, reported Kyodo. A male staff member was also cut on his hand.
The group holds the Guinness record for being the world's largest pop group.
The police have arrested the 24-year-old man, identified as Satoru Umeta.
AKB48's manager was reported as saying the two girls' surgery was successful and they would be able to leave the hospital by Monday.
A Tokyo concert scheduled for Monday night and other fan events have been cancelled.
News of the attack was covered widely in national media. AKB48, which was founded in 2005, is hugely popular in Japan and other Asian countries.