People gather from around Japan to mark the abdication of Emperor Akihito

30 April 2019
2019-04-30 14:08

People from all over Japan joined tourists at the Imperial Palace on Tuesday to mark the day of Emperor Akihito's abdication. Many Japanese visitors were sentimental about the emperor and Empress Michiko, whom they've seen, over the years, visiting disaster-hit areas and meeting people.

Braving the rain, they walked around the grounds near the moat as Akihito and the royals participated in rituals that will lead up to the abdication later in the afternoon. Akihito officially remains emperor until midnight, when the new Reiwa era, meaning "beautiful harmony," begins. Crown Prince Naruhito's enthronement ceremony will be on May 1.

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