Japan's new Emperor Naruhito greets public for first time
May 04 2019 05:03 PM
Japan's Emperor Naruhito (L) and Empress Masako (R) make their first public appearance after ascendi
Japan's Emperor Naruhito (L) and Empress Masako (R) make their first public appearance after ascending to the throne at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo

Dpa/Tokyo

Japan's new Emperor Naruhito greeted the public on Saturday for the first time since he ascended the Chrysanthemum throne earlier this week.

The 59-year-old emperor and his wife, Empress Masako, as well as his younger brother and wife and children, waved from a balcony in the Imperial Palace.

In a speech, he wished for Japan and other countries ‘to pursue world peace.’   The comments echoed an address he made following an official ceremony on Wednesday, marking the formal start of a new imperial era, named ‘Reiwa.’   

Naruhito became emperor a day after his father Akihito renounced the throne, ending a 30-year reign. It marked Japan's first abdication in 202 years.

The balcony appearance - one of six scheduled for Saturday - represents a rare occasion for the public to come close to the Imperial Palace.

Last updated: May 04 2019 05:11 PM


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