Emperor Naruhito gives first New Year’s greetings

japan imperial royal familyBy 江戸村のとくぞう - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons

Emperor Naruhito of Japan delivered the New Year’s Greeting for the first time as monarch.

He told the audience, “The spread of the coronavirus has been difficult for everyone, but I am delighted to be able to greet you again. We are facing many difficulties, but I hope for a peaceful and good New Year for all. And at the beginning of the year, I pray for the happiness of the people of Japan and around the world.”

He was accompanied by his wife, Empress Masako. Princess Aiko was also there for the first time. Also present were Emperor Emeritus Akihito, Empress Emerita Michiko, Crown Prince Fumihito, Crown Princess Kiko and Princess Kako.

Due to restrictions due to corona, the New Year’s greeting could not continue for several years. There were still some restrictions and there were far fewer people than before.

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