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Emperor and Empress of Japan attend the national tree-planting ceremony


Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako of Japan were present in the Aichi Prefecture for the 700th National Tree-planting Festival in the Aichi Forest Park. The theme of the festival was “science on wood, town, people’s tomorrow, the future.” Over 9,000 people attended the festival.

The previous Emperor did not speak at the tree-planting ceremony to reduce the burden on him, but Emperor Naruhito returned to the former tradition and spoke a few words. “The healthy forest not only supplies forest products such as wood but also cultivates clean water, rich land and sea that brings rich fruits and further prevents global warming and improves biodiversity. It plays an important role in conservation, and it can be said that it is a common national property that brings us various benefits. ” He added, “I hope that the use of wood and the creation of a healthy forest will spread widely from here in Aichi to the whole country and to the future.”

The Emperor planted saplings such as cedar and camphor tree, and the Empress planted saplings such as shichikushi and Hitotsubatago.

In the afternoon, the Emperor and Empress went to a care home in Okazi city, where they were again welcomed by crowds.

Emperor Naruhito ascended the throne on 1 May after his father, Emperor Emeritus Akihito – as he is now known – abdicated the previous day. He was the first Japanese emperor to abdicate in over 200 years. With the abdication, the Heisei era came to a conclusion, and the Reiwa era began. He and Empress Masako have one daughter together, Aiko, Princess Toshi, who is not eligible to succeed to the throne. The Emperor’s brother Crown Prince Fumihito is his heir.