On the morning of Monday, May 23, 2022, His Imperial Majesty Emperor Naruhito of Japan welcomed the President of the United States, Mr. Joseph R. Biden, to the Imperial Palace in Tokyo.
After a brief photo-op for the press at the entrance to the Imperial Palace, the Emperor and President Biden held a half-hour meeting. Discussions focused on the measures taken against the Coronavirus and water issues, a topic on which Emperor Naruhito has focused on for years. President Biden also noted that Japan is the most stratgeic partner for the United States in the Asia Pacific region; moreover, the two countries have a strong bond. In turn, Emperor Naruhito expressed hope that the United States and Japan relations will “…continue to strengthen and that the friendship and goodwill between Japan and the United States would advance even more with the visit”…”
In a White House press release, President Biden’s visit was “…intended to offer greetings on behalf of the American people, highlighting the strength of the U.S.-Japan relationship anchored by deep people-to-people ties.”
On Saturday, April 23, 2022, Their Imperial Majesties Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako of Japan virtually attended — from the Imperial Palace in Tokyo — the opening of the 4the Asia-Pacific Water Summit (APWS) held in Kumamoto City, Japan.
According to the official website for the APWS the event will bring together:
“…high-level delegates including heads of states and representatives from international organizations in the Asia-Pacific region will discuss various water-related issues.
The 4th APWS will also share with the world the long-standing efforts of the host city, Kumamoto, in conserving groundwater as well as its recovering efforts from the 2016 Kumamoto Earthquakes.
Under the theme, ‘Water for Sustainable Development: Best Practices and the Next Generation, the outcomes of the 4th APWS discussions on how to implement the recommendations given in the Yangon Declaration are expected to make a great contribution to leading the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).”
During today’s opening, Emperor Naruhito gave a speech in which he noted, “…We must work together on issues related to the relationship between people and water. It’s an urgent issue…”
If you’re interested in learning more about the 4th Asia-Pacific Water Summit please visit their official website here.
On Thursday, April 21, 2022, Their Imperial Highnesses Crown Prince Fumihito and Crown Princess Kiko of Japan visited the Geku, the outer shrine of Ise Jingu Shrine, to report on his proclamation as first in line to the Chrysanthemum Throne.
According to the Japanese newspaper, Asahi Shimbun, the “…Geku Shrine is dedicated to Toyouke no Omikami, the goddess of food and industry.” The newspaper goes on to note that the Imperial couple:
“[Walked] slowly along the road leading to the shrine, and offered a ‘Tamagushi’ sacred ‘Sakaki’ tree branch at the Mizugaki Minami Gomon gate, before praying at the shrine together.
After this, they visited and prayed at the Naiku, or inner shrine, where the legendary sun goddess Amaterasu-omikami is enshrined. This was their first visit to the Ise Jingu shrine since April 2018.”
Anyway, the purpose of today’s visit was to report on the completion of the rituals called, Rikkoshi no Rei, which took place in November 2020, to proclaim Crown Prince Fumihito first in line to the throne to succeed his brother, Naruhito, as the Emperor of Japan.
To say that the year 2011 was a difficult one for the Imperial family as well as for people of Japan is an understatement and so far 2012 began with a rocky start.
A 7.0 earthquake shook Tokyo, Japan on Sunday as His Imperial Majesty Emperor Akihito led his country’s New Year celebrations by urging people to work together in rebuilding the nation from March’s quake-tsunami disaster.
The earthquake struck at 2:28pm near Torishima, a northwestern Pacific Island about 560 kilometres south of Tokyo. There were no immediate reports of damage or injury and no tsunami warning was issued.
To read more about the Imperial family’s new year celebrations please click here. To watch a video of the New Year’s reception at the Imperial palace pleaseclick here.
This afternoon, January 24, 2011, Japan’s Crown Prince Naruhito attended the 150th anniversary of the Amity Treaty between Germany and Japan, “The treaty was signed to establish diplomatic and commercial relations between the two countries.”
During the celebrations Crown Prince Naruhito gave a speech as well as hosted a reception at the National Art Center in Tokyo. Attendees included German Culture Minster Bernd Neumann and the German Ambassador to Japan, Volker Stanzel. Unfortunately, Crown Princess Masako was, once again, absent. Then again, royal watchers never see her unless it’s a balcony appearance at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo.