Japan Emperor, Empress Receive New Year's Greetings

Society

Tokyo, Jan. 1 (Jiji Press)--Japanese Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako received New Year's greetings from other Imperial Family members and the country's leaders, including Prime Minister Fumio Kishida, in a ceremony at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo Sunday.

"At the beginning of the New Year, I pray for the happiness of the people and the development of the nation," the Emperor said in a speech.

The ceremony was scaled down for the third straight year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, though the number of participants increased from a year before by taking infection prevention measures.

Female members of the Imperial Family did not wear tiaras at the ceremony at the request of the Emperor and the Empress, who took the pandemic into consideration.

Emperor Naruhito, Empress Masako and Princess Aiko, the daughter of the Imperial couple, visited Emperor Emeritus Akihito and Empress Emerita Michiko to greet them to celebrate the start of the New Year.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press