Emperor's Birthday Event Canceled amid Coronavirus Crisis


Tokyo, Feb. 17 (Jiji Press)--The Imperial Household Agency said Monday it will cancel visits by the general public to the Imperial Palace on Sunday to celebrate Japanese Emperor Naruhito's 60th birthday, in response to the outbreak of the new coronavirus.

For his first birthday after he ascended the throne in May last year, the Emperor was scheduled to appear on a balcony at the palace to greet well-wishers three times in the morning, with Empress Masako, Crown Prince Akishino, Crown Princess Kiko and other Imperial Family members.

In the past, visits by the public to the palace for then Emperor Akihito were canceled in December 1996 due to the hostage crisis at the Japanese ambassador's official residence in Peru.


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Jiji Press