Japanese Emperor Naruhito ascends Chrysanthemum Throne


Japan's Emperor Naruhito will proclaim his enthronement on Tuesday in a centuries-old ceremony attended by some 2,500 people, including heads of state and other dignitaries from almost 200 countries.

Emperor Naruhito acceded to the Chrysanthemum Throne upon the abdication of his father, Emperor Akihito, on May 1 2019. But the transition was not complete without the Sokui no Rei, a brief ceremony during which Naruhito officially proclaimed his status as emperor to the world.

The central moment of the ceremony took place when the chamberlains drew the curtains of the Takamikura throne, revealing Naruhito dressed in the ceremonial dark orange robe worn exclusively by Japanese emperors on special occasions, while the assistants performed deep bows.

"It is a new era and the emperor is the support for the Japanese people, so I feel very happy on this day", Yabu said as he stood near a subway station in pouring rain.

Naruhito began the day's ceremonies by reporting his enthronement to his imperial ancestors at one of three shrines on the palace grounds, dressed in a black headdress and pure white robes with a long train borne by an attendant.

Akihito pledged during the previous ceremony in 1990 to observe Japan's pacifist constitution and fulfil his duty as a symbol of the state and of the unity of the people.

Armenian President Armen Sarkissian and his wife Nouneh Sarkissian were among leaders and dignitaries who traveled to Japan to participate in the ceremony celebrating the formal ascension of Emperor Naruhito.

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Guðni expressed pleasure, as a historian, at being present at the moment when Naruhito officially inherited the throne from his father Akihito.

Other have voiced concern that Abe's congratulatory message, delivered from a point physically below that of the emperor and empress, contradicted the postwar constitution's assertion that sovereignty lies with the Japanese people.

Japanese Emperor Naruhito officially proclaimed Tuesday his enthronement before roughly 2,000 guests, including dignitaries from about 190 countries and worldwide organisations, in a ceremony at the Imperial Palace featuring elements of ancient protocol.

Emperor Naruhito leaves the state room after a ceremony to proclaim his enthronement to the world. Emperors now have no political authority.

The enthronement ceremony was held before two thousand guests and many saw symbolism in the future of the country when the ceremony began and sunlight appeared, Japanese literary erudite Susumu Nakanishi told several local media.

Though many Japanese welcomed the enthronement ceremony, there was a demonstration in downtown Tokyo to protest the imperial system, and three demonstrators were arrested after jostling with riot police, Kyodo news agency reported. "Traffic has been restricted and it is causing inconvenience for ordinary people", Arai said.

Mr Abe also said to have been "deeply touched" by the Emperor's speech, and called him a great symbol of state.