21 February 2018
AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook
Geographic areas

  • > Africa
  • > Central Asia
  • > Europe
  • > Middle East
  • > Nord America
  • > North Asia
  • > South Asia
  • > South East Asia
  • > South West Asia
  • > Sud America
  • > East Asia

  • » 07/14/2016, 10.04


    Emperor wants to abdicate but "has no health problems"

    The Chrysanthemum Throne is the oldest monastic dynasty in the world. The current ruler, 82, reportedly wants to abdicate. Experts point out this will mean a change in the law of imperial succession. Akihito is the first Japanese monarch without "divine prerogatives", renounced by his father Hirohito after the surrender of Japan in 1945.


    Tokyo (AsiaNews) - The Japanese Emperor Akihito plans to abdicate "in a few years" and leave the throne to his son Naruhito. Japanese television reports that the sovereign's decision was made "a long time ago". Apparently there are no hidden health problems, but only the desire to pass on the charge given the the impressive amount of commitments it involves.

    It is the first time in two centuries for a monarch of the Land of the Rising Sun to step down. However most of the 124 emperors who have occupied the Chrysanthemum Throne has left office while still alive. The current ruler is 82 years old and has reigned for 27 years. Abdications are not foreseen by the law of the Imperial Household which, because of this, will soon be revised.

    Abdication was abolished in the Meiji period, between 1868 and 1912, the role of the Emperor once again took on major importance after centuries of control exercised by the Shogun. Akihito ascended the throne on January 7, 1989, upon the death of his father Hirohito, and was the first ruler to ascend to the imperial throne after the Second World War without enjoying "divine" powers, following his father's renunciation of it in the famous 'Declaration of the emperor's human nature'. This was "stressed" by the defeat of Japan in World War II.

    Under the proclamation the pacifist constitution was promulgated and adopted in 1947, which ruled that the emperor is "the symbol of the state and of the unity of the Japanese people." After the war, Akihito visited Europe and the United States, and in 1953 took part in the coronation of the Queen Elizabeth II of England, representing his father. In 1959 he was the first Crown Prince to marry a commoner, Michiko Shoda, and in 1992 became the first Japanese emperor to visit China.

    The first in line of succession to the throne is the eldest son, 56 year old Crown Prince Naruhito, married to Princess Masako. According to tradition Akihito is the 125th emperor in a hereditary line which began with the first monarch Jinmu, in 660 BC The chronicles tell of how the succession to the throne originated around the fifth century, making Japan's the oldest hereditary monarchies in the world.

    e-mail this to a friend Printable version

    See also

    24/01/2017 13:12:00 JAPAN
    Towards a special law to allow the Emperor to abdicate

    The last abdication in the history of the country took place over 200 years ago. The emperor's desire and the lack of legislation on the subject. The indications of the commission established to deliberate. More than 90% of Japanese favors the Emperor’s wish. 2018-2019 may mark a new era for the Chrysanthemum Throne.


    08/08/2016 12:53:00 JAPAN
    Tokyo, Emperor ready to abdicate: Increasingly difficult to perform my duties

    Akihito speaks on state television, never utters the word "resignation" but says: "I am old and my tasks are heavy, I fear not being able to fulfill them well”. The population supports him, but lawyers believe it would be "dangerous" to leave Chrysanthemum throne vacant.

    19/05/2017 10:07:00 JAPAN
    Government approves law for the abdication of Emperor Akihito

    The law can only be used for this emperor. In all probability it will be approved by parliament by the end of June. Naruhito's new era is expected to begin with 2019. The imperial family has few members and few male children.     

    16/02/2006 JAPAN
    Political struggle behind rumours over royal succession
    Strong-willed and a non traditional wife, Princess Masako has run up against Conservative opposition. Princess Kiko's pregnancy stops in their tracks Koizumi's plans to change succession rules to let women ascend to the throne.

    01/12/2017 09:08:00 JAPAN
    Emperor Akihito will abdicate on April 30, 2019

    The Special Committee decided today. On December 8th Prince Naruhito should be confirmed as the next emperor. On December 23, Akihito will be 84 years old. It is the first abdication in 200 years.

    Editor's choices

    Snehonir, the 'house of tenderness' for the disabled (photos)

    Founded 25 years ago by Shanti Rani Sisters and PIME missionaries in Rajshahi, the facility is open to the mentally and physically disabled, deaf, blind, orphans, poor, and abandoned. The guiding principle is to start them in life.

    Defeated on ice, but 'first' in history, joint Korean hockey team players hug

    After losing to Sweden in their last match, the Korean team ends up in seventh place. Players burst into tears at their imminent separation. "Politicians made that executive decision [to have a joint team]. Our players and staff are the ones that made it work,” said the team’s proud Canadian coach. One South Korean athlete hopes the country is proud of them. "It was bigger than hockey."


    AsiaNews monthly magazine (in Italian) is free.


    News feed

    Canale RSSRSS channel 


    IRAN 2016 Banner

    2003 © All rights reserved - AsiaNews C.F. e P.Iva: 00889190153 - GLACOM®