Human Interest

Japan’s emperor hopes for peace, greets public on 63rd birthday

Tokyo, Feb 23 (EFE).- Japan’s Emperor Naruhito greeted the public on his 63rd birthday on Thursday, and has expressed deep sorrow for the suffering of people caused by conflicts around the world.

“I strongly feel the importance of thinking beyond one’s own country to engage in dialogue to overcome differences and cooperate in solving problems,” Naruhito said in a press conference ahead of his birthday and released by Kyodo news agency on his birthday Thursday – on the eve of the one-year anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

“Each of us is being asked once again what we can do to realize a peaceful world,” he added.

He also expressed hopes that citizens would support each other to overcome the pandemic and cost of living crises.

Regarding June’s 30th anniversary of his wedding to Empress Masako, the emperor said that she “is an important presence who supports me in daily life and someone with whom I can talk regarding both public and private matters.”

“We have come this far by sharing our joys and sorrows,” the emperor said.

Last year he was diagnosed with an enlarged prostate, although no further abnormalities have been detected.

Naruhito expressed his gratitude for the concern shown by the public and assured that he is living life as normal.

With Masako and their daughter, Princess Aiko, as well as other family members, Naruhito appeared on the balcony of the Imperial Palace Thursday in his first birthday appearance since he ascended the throne in May 2019.

The event, which was canceled the last three years due to the pandemic, was attended by around 4,800 people selected by a lottery. EFE


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