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Japan Holds Scaled-Down Event to Mark Emperor's Birthday

Japan Holds Scaled-Down Event to Mark Emperor's Birthday

   Tokyo, Feb. 23 (Jiji Press)--Japan held an event to celebrate the 61st birthday of Emperor Naruhito on Tuesday morning though it was scaled down amid the novel coronavirus epidemic.
   In the Imperial Palace, the Emperor received congratulations from Crown Prince Akishino and Crown Princess Kiko as well as the leaders of the executive, legislative and judicial branches including Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga.
   In response to Suga's celebratory remark, Emperor Naruhito showed his gratitude and expressed hope that Suga will take good care of himself.
   The event, attended also by Empress Masako, had a smaller number of participants than usual. This year, there was no lunch feast with guests or celebratory tea party with foreign ambassadors.
   Furthermore, an event where the general public visits the palace grounds to celebrate the Emperor's birthday was canceled for the second straight year.

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AFP-JIJI PRESS NEWS JOURNAL


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