International royalsJapan

Emperor Akihito will not release traditional New Year message

The Emperor of Japan will not release the traditional New Year message this year, which marks another step towards reducing his royal duties. Vice Grand Steward Yasuhiko Nishimura on Monday said Emperor Akihito, who recently turned 83, has accepted a proposal made by the Imperial Household Agency to forgo the message that he has been delivering on 1 January ever since he succeeded to the throne in…
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Empress Michiko of Japan is ill

Her Imperial Majesty Empress Michiko of Japan is ill. This was announced in an official statement from the Imperial Household Agency yesterday, on Monday, 12 December. Empress Michiko, age 82, was diagnosed with acute bronchitis last Friday after suffering a slight fever and cough. The Empress has cancelled a planned appearance at a karate event. On Sunday according to the official statement, she…
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