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The Emperor’s Overseas Travels: An Insider’s ViewNojima Tsuyoshi

Emperor Akihito is scheduled to abdicate on April 30, 2019, ending a reign of more than 30 years. Over this period he and Empress Michiko have made 19 trips overseas. The fundamental purpose of such visits is to promote friendship and interchanges, but in many of the countries he visited there were also connections to the legacy of World War II, including the issues of Japan’s postwar settlements,…

Crown Prince Naruhito: A Profile of Japan’s Next EmperorYamashita Shinji

In less than a year, on May 1, 2019, Crown Prince Naruhito is set to ascend the Chrysanthemum Throne. Former Imperial Household Agency employee Yamashita Shinji gives a profile of Japan’s next emperor.

Religious Faith and the Emperor as a Symbol of the StateShimada Hiromi

Emperor Akihito is the first to have come to the throne under the postwar Constitution. Throughout his reign, he has looked to define for himself a pattern of behavior fitting his role as symbol of the state and national unity. The most obvious results of this search have been the imperial couple’s missions to areas affected by natural disasters and visits to many of the battlefields of the Pacific War. What is the faith that has supported the emperor throughout his reign and helped him to find a role for himself?

Emperor, Empress Visit Okinawa Island of Yonaguni (News)

Yonaguni, Okinawa Pref., March 28 (Jiji Press)--Japanese Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko made their first-ever visit to the Okinawa Prefecture island of Yonaguni, the westernmost part of Japan, on Wednesday. The couple, who arrived in the southernmost Japan prefecture on Tuesday for a three-day tour, flew to the island from Naha, the capital of Okinawa, aboard a special jet. The Emperor …

Japan May Make New Emperor’s Proclamation Date Nonworking Day (News)

Tokyo, Feb. 11 (Jiji Press)—The Japanese government is considering designating the date for proclaiming Crown Prince Naruhito's accession to the throne, expected for October next year, as a nonworking day, informed sources said. The move is designed to make the proclamation ceremony a celebratory event for the Japanese people, the sources said. The event is core part of the enthronement cere…

Carriage Tours of Envoys Revived from Tokyo Station (News)

Tokyo, Dec. 11 (Jiji Press)—A horse-drawn carriage carrying a new ambassador to Japan to the Imperial Palace left Tokyo Station's entrance for distinguished guests for the first time in some 10 years on Monday. A horse-drawn carriage carrying a new ambassador to Japan travels through the Marunouchi square in front of Tokyo Station on December 11, 2017. (© Jiji) The move followed the recent …

Imperial Palace’s Inui Street Opened to Public (News)

Tokyo, Dec. 2 (Jiji Press)—Inui Street in the Imperial Palace in central Tokyo was opened to the public on Saturday, in time for the autumn foliage season. Visitors can walk on the road running from the Sakashita gate to the Inui gate between 10 am and 2:30 pm until December 10. Visitors enjoy autumn foliage at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo on December 2, 2017. (© Jiji) Public access to I…

Japan’s Emperor Akihito to Abdicate on April 30, 2019 (News)

Tokyo, Dec. 1 (Jiji Press)—Japan's Emperor Akihito will step down on April 30, 2019, in the country's first Imperial abdication in about 200 years, Prime Minister Abe Shinzō said Friday. Crown Prince Naruhito will accede to the throne on May 1 that year, when the country's era name is also set to change from the current Heisei. The Imperial House Council on Friday met and agreed on the timin…

Imperial Palace’s Inui Street to Be Opened on December 2-10 (News)

Tokyo, Nov. 15 (Jiji Press)—The Imperial Household Agency said Wednesday that it will open Inui Street, running through the Imperial Palace in central Tokyo, to the public on December 2-10. The road, which runs from the Sakashita gate to the Inui gate, is open to the public twice a year during the best times to see cherry blossoms and autumn colors. It will be the first time in one and a hal…

Japan Emperor Abdication Seen as Likely at End of March 2019 (News)

Tokyo, Oct. 20 (Jiji Press)—The Japanese government is now likely to set Emperor Akihito's abdication under a special law enacted in June for the end of March 2019, it was learned Friday. The abdication would be followed by Crown Prince Naruhito's accession to the throne and the start of a new Japanese era on April 1, a government source said. The government is working to hold a meeting of …

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