His Imperial Majesty Emperor Akihito of Japan waved to cheering New Year well-wishers on Monday, January 2, 2011, and said he shares in disaster-struck nation’s pain as well as hopes for its recovery.
Emperor Akihito appeared on a balcony at the Imperial Palace along with his wife Empress Michiko and their family, as throngs of well-wishers looked on from below, some energetically waving the Japanese flag – a red circle, symbolising the rising sun, in a backdrop of white.
Akihito said he felt sorrow for those who died in the March 11 earthquake and tsunami, as well as those forced from their homes because of the nuclear disaster that followed.
The quake and tsunami in north eastern Japan left nearly 20,000 people dead or missing.
The Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant went into meltdown because the tsunami destroyed backup generators. Fully cleaning up and decommissioning the plant is expected to take decades.
‘Last year was a truly distressing year,’ Akihito said in a New Year’s statement. ‘But I hope for recovery, and may this year be a good one, even in little ways, for everyone.’
Akihito holds no political powers and is viewed as a symbol of the nation, unlike his father, the wartime Hirohito, who had been revered as a divinity.
‘I hope that the people’s hearts will always be with the afflicted, and that everyone will persevere and work together to build a brighter tomorrow,’ Akihito said.
To watch a video as well as to view photos please click the links below:
On December 20, 2011, H.I.M. Emperor Akihito of Japan hosted the annual year-end luncheon for the Japanese government held at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo, Japan. Attendees included Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda and Farm minister, Michihiko Kano.
On November 6, 2011, H.I.M. Emperor Akihito of Japan was hospitalized for Bronchitis. Per the Japanese news agency, NHK World:
Doctors at the University of Tokyo Hospital held a news conference on Tuesday to brief reporters on the Emperor’s condition.
They said the Emperor had a mild fever when he entered the hospital on November 6th with bronchitis. He was scheduled to leave last Friday, but was unable to do so because his fever had returned.
The doctors said the Emperor’s temperature is still high and he has lost his appetite.
They also said he may be developing bronchitis again or have a new infection of his respiratory system, so they are giving him other types of antibiotics.
The medical team declined to specify how much longer the Emperor will have to stay in hospital, but said that even if he can be discharged in a week or so, they want him to rest until the end of the month. source
Click here to watch a video news report (it’s in English).
On November 6, 2011, H.I.M Emperor Akihito of Japan was admitted to the University of Tokyo Hospital. According to a spokesman from the Imperial Household Agency, the 77-year-old emperor developed a fever on Thursday. As a result of his deteriorating condition the emperor was admitted to the hospital as “… a precaution… due a high fever and of the symptoms of bronchitis he has exhibited. He also appears to be fatigued and has lost some resistance to fight his illness…”
At this time it is unknown when Emperor Akihito will be released from the hospital.
Source: BBC News, Japan Times Online and Washington Post
On Wednesday, March 16, 2011, H.I.M. Emperor Akihito of Japan made a rare appearance on Japanese national television to share his thoughts and concerns about the aftermath of last week’s 9.0 earthquake and destructive tsunami that followed.
According to the BBC News:
TV stations interrupted programming on Wednesday to show the emperor describing the crisis facing the nation as “unprecedented in scale”.
The 77-year-old – deeply respected by many Japanese – said: “I hope from the bottom of my heart that the people will, hand in hand, treat each other with compassion and overcome these difficult times.”
To watch Emperor Akihito’s speech via the BBC please click the link: BBC News
It was announced today February 11, 2011, via the Imperial Palace in Tokyo, that HIM Emperor Akihito of Japan has been diagnosed with Arteriosclerosis. Currently, the 77 year old Emperor will be “… under medication…” and will continue to carry out his duties as well as activities as usual.
According to the Mainichi Daily News:
The stiffening of the arteries was discovered during a medical check using contrast agent on his artery leading to the heart at the University of Tokyo Hospital, the agency said.
The Emperor will stay the night at the hospital and return to the Imperial Palace on Saturday, according to the agency.
‘The Emperor can continue his official duties and exercise such as tennis and walking’, said Ichiro Kanazawa, imperial household medical supervisor. ‘I asked the emperor to let his personal doctor know immediately if he feels any kinds of symptoms such as pain in the chest,’ Kanazawa said.
It’s good to hear that he will continue his duties as Emperor of Japan, but at the same time I hope he takes it easy for a while.
If any new information shall come through the news wire I will definitely post it for all of you.