Japanese Emperor visits father’s tomb before abdication

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Tokyo, April 23 (IANS) Japans outgoing Emperor Akihito on Tuesday visited the tomb of his father on the outskirts of Tokyo, in one of the last official ceremonies before his abdication on April 30.

Akihito, 85, and Empress Michiko, 84, visited the mausoleum of the former emperor, Hirohito, in the Musashino Imperial Graveyard in Hachioji, reports Efe news.

It was one of the 11 official ceremonies scheduled before the Akihito abdicates the throne, the first by a living Japanese monarch in more than two centuries.

His eldest son, Naruhito, 59, will succeed in a closed-door ceremony on May 1 before being officially crowned in a public ceremony at the Imperial Palace on October 22.

Emperor Akihito’s abdication will be the first since the resignation of Emperor Kokaku in 1817.

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It will take place three years after he expressed his desire to abdicate the Chrysanthemum Throne due to his advanced age and delicate health.

–IANS

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