Emperor Naruhito of Japan Hosts New Year Reception for The First Time in 4 Years

New Year reception Japan imperial family

Imperial Tiaras returned to Tokyo after Emperor Naruhito hosted a New Year reception in four years. The last time the imperial family hosted a New Year reception was in January 2020 before the pandemic. 

Japanese imperial family has an annual tradition of hosting a New Year's reception for diplomats and government officials. Emperor Naruhito hosted his first New Year's reception as Japan's Head of State in January 2020.

New Year reception Japan imperial family
Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako

New Year reception Japan imperial family
members of the Japanese imperial family

The New Year's reception was held at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo. It was attended by all members of the Japanese Imperial Family: Emperor Naruhito, Empress Masako, their daughter Princess Aiko, Crown Prince Fumihito, his wife Crown Princess Kiko, and their children Prince Hisahito and Princess Kako.

New Year reception Japan imperial family
Princess Aiko and her cousin, Princess Kako

Other members of the Japanese imperial family who attended: Princess Takamado (widow of Prince Norihito of Takamado, a first cousin to Emperor emeritus Akihito) and her daughter, Princess Tsuguko of Takamado, and Princesses Akiko and Yoko of Mikasa (daughters of Prince Tomohito of Mikasa, a first cousin to Emperor emeritus Akihito).

New Year reception Japan imperial family
From left: Princess Takamado, Princess Kako, and Crown Princess Kiko

Princesses Tsuguko, Akiko, and Yoko are unmarried, thus, remained imperial princesses and members of the Imperial Family. The emperor's 88-year-old paternal uncle, Masahito, Prince Hitachi, currently the 3rd in line of succession to the Japanese throne, is absent for this year's New Year's reception.

New Year reception Japan imperial family
From left Princess Aiko, Princess Tsugoko of Takamado, Princess Akiko and Yoko of Mikasa

Empress Masako wore the Meiji Scroll Diamond Tiara, which is traditionally worn by Japanese empresses, while her daughter, Princess Aiko, wore her paternal aunt's tiara, Princess Sayako's Mikimoto Diamond Tiara (Princess Sayako left the imperial family when she married a commoner). So far, the Japanese government has not allocated funds to buy a new tiara for Princess Aiko. 

However, Japan is currently devastated by two successive tragedies after the New Year's celebration - A magnitude of 7.5 shook the Noto Peninsula in the central prefecture of Ishikawa on the afternoon of New Year's Day, collapsing buildings, sparking fires, and triggering tsunami alerts. Following the tragedy, the emperor canceled the remaining New Year's reception 

On January 2, Japan Airlines (JAL) collided with the Coast Guard aircraft at Tokyo's Haneda Airport. All 379 people on board JAL escaped before the aircraft burst into flame. However, the Coast Guard aircraft, which was on its way to the rescue mission related to the earthquake, left five people dead

Following the tragedies, the emperor canceled the remaining New Year's reception events. our condolences to the families of those who lost their lives in these painful tragedies.



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