Crown Prince & Crown Princess Akishino Current Events Part 1: May 2019 -

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More videos and photos of Day 1 in Hiroshima on June 11
- Peace Memorial Park
- Deaf Theatre Company performance
- exhibition of works by people with disabilities

NHK notes Prince Akishino last visited Peace Memorial Park in June 2018 and as a couple, they last visited 17 years ago in 2005. (Not mentioned is Princess Kiko and Prince Hisahito's private visit in 2018 during his summer break.)

Photos: Asahi, FNN

Crown Prince, Princess lay flowers for A-bomb victims in Hiroshima - The Japan News
Following a deep bow, the couple placed bouquets of white lilies at the floral tribute stand.

Crown Prince Akishino asked Hiroshima Mayor Kazumi Matsui about the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, saying, “The scale [of coronavirus infections] has diminished, but how is the situation here?”
ETA: Crown Prince Akishino and Crown Princess Kiko attended the 70th National Congress of the Deaf in Hiroshima on June 12. His speech included sign language around the last minute (NNN video)

Photos: Asahi, Mainichi
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On June 14th, Crown Princess Kiko remotely visited the Red Cross Blood Center in Ehime Prefecture. She attended a blood donation class with elementary school students and learned about the center's activities such as its blood donation bus.
The visit is connected to next month's National Convention for the Promotion of Blood Donation Campaign.

Photos, video: FNN, FNN2,,

On June 14th, Crown Prince Akishino attended the "24th Japan Water Prize / 2022 Stockholm Junior Water Prize" at Miraikan, the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation in Koto, Tokyo.

Photos: AP Images
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Crown Prince Akishino and Crown Princess Kiko attended an exhibition commemorating the 50th anniversary of Okinawa's reversion to Japanese sovereignty from U.S. occupation at the Tokyo National Museum today, June 17:

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Crown Prince Akishino and Crown Princess Kiko attended a ceremony marking the 60th anniversary of the administrative counselors' system in Japan today, June 30:

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:previous: Crown couple attends ceremony to mark 60th anniversary of administrative counselors system - The Japan News
[...] There are about 5,000 administrative counselors across the nation, who without compensation respond to inquiries and complaints from citizens about national administrative actions.

“I strongly hope that the continuous efforts of administrative counselors nationwide will help maintain a safe society in which citizens can live with peace of mind,” Crown Prince Akishino said at the ceremony.
“Akishinomiya”: Japanese Crown Prince Fumihito Opens Up About Royal Life in New Book |
The new book Akishinomiya by Emori Keiji is an intimate look into the mind of Crown Prince Fumihito. The work, which takes its name from the prince’s official title, is based on 37 interviews conducted from 2017 to January of this year. Emori, a former reporter for major daily Mainichi Shimbun, began covering the crown prince more than 30 years ago through his connection with the late Kawashima Tatsuhiko, professor emeritus at Gakushūin University and father of Fumihito’s wife Princess Kiko. The book gives readers a first-person perspective on the often frank-spoken member of the Japanese imperial family.

[... skipping Mako's marriage and abdication as those topics are covered elsewhere ...]

Limited Freedoms
Akishinomiya also delves into the crown prince’s views on the strictures of royal life. Fumihito has publicly chafed at the limitations placed on him since birth. Although he accepts that his status as a member of the imperial family assures his material needs are met, at the expense of Japanese taxpayers, he notes that the arrangement deprives him of the freedoms other people take for granted: “I’m surrounded by attendants at all times. As one might imagine, this can be very constraining. I’m human like everyone else, after all. If you asked 10 people to step into my shoes, I’m certain that every one of them would find it stifling.” Continuing, he says, “Of the few liberties I have, I hold the freedom of thought most dear.”

Emori notes the peculiarity of the crown prince’s situation. Like other hereditary members of the imperial family, nearly every aspect of his life since birth has been determined by his royal status. He points out that scholars of Japanese constitutional law have framed the arrangement as the price of royalty, a tradeoff in which the crown prince and others are “compensated” for the limits placed on their personal freedoms. However, Fumihito questions the humanity of this, arguing that human dignity demands that imperial household members be allowed to exercise their free will as any other person, particularly in crucial matters like abdication.

[... Daijōsai and inaccurate media coverage, also covered elsewhere ...]

Counting Sheep
In Akishinomiya, Emori also touches on the crown prince’s playfulness. “If I were reborn,” Fumihito muses, “I think I might like to come back as a sheep so I could spend all day lazily munching on grass . . . .that seems to me like it would be fun.” The crown prince’s affinity for the animal dates back to when he was in the lower grades of elementary school and kept a sheep as a pet on the grounds of the Akasaka Palace, where he lived.

Emori states in the preface of Akishinomiya that although the crown prince is an often misunderstood figure, the book sets out to clarify the controversies and present Fumihito as a key member of the imperial family, who together with his wife Crown Princess Kiko and the emperor and empress are working to reshape the imperial household for the Reiwa era (2019–). Like so much associated with Fumihito, though, the work has been dogged by controversy since its release in mid-May, including reports that Emperor Naruhito was not informed prior to publication. Such undeserved criticism online has blunted the book’s reception and is doubly unfortunate as it uses the work to propagate a negative image of the crown.
On July 8th, Crown Princess Kiko attended the 54th Aiiku Team Member National Convention at Meiji Kinenkan in Tokyo. She is President of the Imperial Gift Foundation Boshi-Aiiku-kai (Mother and Child).

About 100 people, including those involved in child-rearing support and community activities, participated.

Photo: Yomiuri
Crown Prince Akishino attended the opening ceremony of a national high school equine competition in Gotemba in Shizuoka Prefecture today, July 20:

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On July 19th, Crown Prince Akishino attended the Reiwa 2 and Reiwa 3 (2020-2021) Agricultural Achievement Awards Ceremony at Akasaka Intercity AIR in Minato, Tokyo. He is president of Dainihon Nokai (Agricultural society of Japan).

Photo: Yomiuri

Crown Prince celebrates agricultural award recipients - The Japan News
Crown Prince Akishino attended an event for the Dainihon Nokai (Agricultural society of Japan) on Tuesday in Minato Ward, Tokyo, and congratulated 81 recipients awarded for their contributions in promoting agriculture and developing related technologies in fiscal 2020 and 2021.

On July 20th, Crown Prince Akishino attended the 56th All Japan High School Equestrian Games opening ceremony in Gotemba City, Shizuoka Prefecture. Afterwards, he visited AOI―PARC, an industry-academia-government research and development center in Numazu City.
He has attended the high school equestrian games frequently since 1981. Princesses Mako and Kako have substituted. Prince Akishino last attended in 2016. Princess Kako attended 2017-2019. [TBS]

More photos: Asahi, at-s
Crown Princess Kiko at the 58th Blood Donation Campaign on July 14
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On July 27th, Crown Prince Akishino and Crown Princess Kiko began a 2-day visit to Tokushima Prefecture for the 2022 Inter-High School Championships. They watched badminton after arrival in Naruto City in the afternoon. The opening ceremony is tomorrow in Tokushima City.

This year's championships will be held with spectators in Ehime, Tokushima, Kagawa, Kochi, Wakayama Prefectures. Infection control measures include limiting attendees and staff accompanying the Crown Prince couple took PCR tests.

The Inter-High School athletic event was transferred from Emperor Naruhito and Empress Masako to the Akishino couple after the succession. It's the first time in 3 years royals are visiting the host prefecture.

Photos: Sankei, NHK, Asahi, AP Images
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Crown Prince Akishino and Crown Princess Kiko attended the opening ceremony of the national inter-high school sports championships in Tokushima today, July 28:

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On July 31st, Crown Prince Akishino, Crown Princess Kiko, and Prince Hisahito attended the "46th National High School Comprehensive Cultural Festival / Tokyo Sobun 2022" opening ceremony at Tokyo International Forum and the parade at Marunouchi Naka-Dori Avenue in Chiyoda, Tokyo.
The trio also met participants later.

The cultural festival has events in 23 categories until August 4. The Crown Prince couple and Prince Hisahito plan to visit multiple events during that period. [Mainichi]

Photos: Asahi, AP Images
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On August 2nd, Crown Prince Akishino, Crown Princess Kiko, and Prince Hisahito attended some events of the "46th National High School Comprehensive Cultural Festival / Tokyo Sobun 2022" in Tokyo.

- competitive karuta in Sumida Ward.
- calligraphy and photography exhibitions at Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum in Taito Ward.

Photos: AP Images, Asahi

English video of July 31 opening ceremony, chat with high school students, and parade
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On August 4th, Crown Prince Akishino, Crown Princess Kiko, and Prince Hisahito attended light music and chorus performances of the "46th National High School Comprehensive Cultural Festival / Tokyo Sobun 2022" in Tokyo.

- light music: bands play and sing original music at Nakano Sunplaza in Nakano Ward
- chorus at Tokyo Metropolitan Theatre in Toshima Ward

Photos: Asahi, Kyodo, AP Images
Karuta and calligraphy exhibition on August 2
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On August 5th, Crown Prince Akishino and Crown Princess Kiko visited the 80th All-Japan Student Invention and Innovation Exhibition at the Science Museum in Chiyoda, Tokyo.

About 160 works were exhibited. Takahiro Kudo (15), a junior high student from Kanagawa Prefecture, received the top award for his ventilation system that automatically opens and closes windows according to the concentration of carbon dioxide in the room.

Until 2017, then-Crown Prince Naruhito and Crown Princess Masako visited the exhibition every 5 years. This is the first visit for the Akishino couple. The exhibition is sponsored by the Japan Institute of Invention and Innovation whose president is Prince Hitachi.

Photos: AP Images, Asahi, Mainichi
Crown Prince Akishino and Crown Princess Kiko attended a boy scout event in Tokyo on August 7:

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:previous: Thanks, iceflower! The Crown Prince couple attended the 18th Japan Scout Jamboree, one of the largest Boy Scouts camps in Japan and held every four years. This year also marks the 100th anniversary of the Boy Scouts of Japan.

Before the ceremony, the couple met scout representatives and the Crown Prince mentioned his experience at the 1978 jamboree in Gotemba, Shizuoka Prefecture. In his speech at the ceremony, Crown Prince Akishino expressed sympathy for the heavy rain damage in Yamagata and Niigata Prefectures. The event at the Ota Ward General Gymnasium was connected to various venues online. [Mainichi]

Asahi gallery includes Princess Kako's Girl Scouts 100th anniversary camp in Nagano Prefecture.

NTV video
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Today, August 19, Crown Princess Kiko attended a gathering with female researchers who returned to work after taking leave for childbearing or child-rearing in Tokyo:

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On August 24th, Crown Princess Kiko remotely attended the 13th International Conference on the Maternal & Child Health (MCH) Handbook in Toronto, Canada from the Akishino residence. She recorded a video greeting for the conference on August 17th.

Photo: Sankei Imperial Weekly 758
On September 1st, Crown Prince Akishino and Crown Princess Kiko attended the autumn memorial service for the Great Kanto Earthquake and war victims at the Memorial Hall in Sumida, Tokyo.

AP Images, Getty
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On September 4th, Crown Prince Akishino and Crown Princess Kiko attended the special performance commemorating the 50th anniversary of Okinawa's Reversion to Japan at Yokohama Noh Theater. They enjoyed 9 Ryukyu dances and thanked the performers afterwards.

One of the performers, Fusako Shida (85), a Living National Treasure, has been friends with the prince since his childhood. Kiko took a seminar on "Okinawa Studies" when she was a university student and learned Ryukyu dance from Shida.

Photos, sources: AP Images, Sankei, NHK, TBS
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Crown Princess Kiko turns 56 on September 11.

Photos and video were taken on August 18 at the temporary Akishino residence.

Galleries: Asahi, Mainichi

Written responses to press questions (Google translation)

- resuming in-person visits, continuing virtual visits
- participation at international conferences for tuberculosis, pregnancy and hypertension, Imperial Gift Foundation Mother and Child Aiiku Association, etc.
- concern for people's suffering and hardships from pandemic, heavy rain damage, and heat wave
- grateful for opportunities to meet in-person
- Japanese recipients of Nobel prize, Paralympics, etc.
- sad farewells to honorary director of the Tokyo Children's Library & translator Kyoko Matsuoka, who Kiko and her children met during trips to the library, and fashion designer Hanae Mori "who dressed me and my daughters for important events at the Imperial Court."
- she's pleased Japan has become a "low prevalence country" for tuberculosis according to WHO standards
- relieved all Crown Prince Proclamation events have been completed and renewed sense of responsibility that comes with the position
- continue to support Their Majesties and pray for the peace of people's lives
- limited opportunities to see the Emeritus couple due to the pandemic but since they have moved to Akasaka Estate this spring, Kiko hopes to see them more often
- quick passage of time as she recalls Princess Aiko as a little girl playing with Mako and Kako. Princess Yuriko reached 99, a milestone of longevity.
- Kako's activities have expanded, including inheriting Mako's patronages. Kiko "would like Kako to fully fulfill your duties as a member of the royal family while gaining experience in public activities. Regarding marriage and the future, I will listen carefully to my second daughter's feelings and thoughts, and also my thoughts and feelings. I hope I can convey my thoughts."
- About Mako: "It's been almost a year since the two got married. The two of them had a clear idea and consulted with those around them about the process leading up to their marriage. It seems that she continues to be grateful to many people. I sincerely hope that the two of you will work together, take care of your health, and lead a peaceful new life. I pray for the happiness of both of you. Regarding the current situation and life, I will refrain from answering because of the person's wishes."

Crown Princess Kiko Turns 56, Wishes for Married Daughter's Happiness |
Japanese Crown Princess Kiko turned 56 on Sunday as she wishes for the happiness of her first daughter, former Princess Mako, who married commoner Kei Komuro in October last year and lives in New York now.

"I sincerely hope that the two will join hands and live their new life peacefully," Crown Princess Kiko said in a statement answering questions from journalists ahead of her birthday.

"I hope that some day I can make a banksia rose arch and walk around the garden slowly along with my daughter," the Crown Princess also said.


"Together with the Crown Prince, I will pray for peace of people's daily lives at any time and fulfill my duties while supporting the Emperor and Empress," Crown Princess Kiko said.
Kiko turns 56, yearns to take a stroll with daughter Mako | The Asahi Shimbun: Breaking News, Japan News and Analysis

The Banksia rose was Mako’s signature mark when she was a princess and is a favorite flower of Kiko and her husband.


Turning to Princess Kako, Kiko’s second daughter, the crown princess said, “I am hoping that she will fulfill her duty as a member of the imperial family by carrying out more official public activities.”


With regard to Kako’s future, including her marriage, Kiko said she hoped to share her thoughts with her while listening carefully to her daughter’s feelings and opinions.

Kiko said Prince Hisahito, second in line to the Chrysanthemum throne after his father, “is leading a full life” as a first-year student at the University of Tsukuba’s Senior High School, adding that he raises vegetables on a plot near the family’s Akasaka Estate residence in Tokyo’s Minato Ward.

Kiko said her family helps him by pulling up weeds.

Turning to her future hopes for him, she said, “I want him to become a person who can look at the world from a wider perspective” through exchanges with people from all walks of life.

The Crown Prince couple are looking at Makino Botanical Encyclopedia Original Illustration Collection and a picture book "The Busy Days of Granny Peas and Grandpa Soramame"
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On September 14th, Crown Prince Akishino and Crown Princess Kiko visited multiple customs facilities in Yokohama and Tokyo for the 150th anniversary of establishing customs in Japan.

- Yokohama Customs Container Inspection Center in Tsurumi Ward, Yokohama
- Yokohama Customs Main Office in Naka Ward, Yokohama
- Tokyo Haneda Customs Office in Ota Ward, Tokyo

They were briefed on the Port of Yokohama's history and custom duties, toured cargo inspection sites, and observed activities of drug detection dogs.

Photos: Mainichi

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On September 20th, Crown Prince Akishino acted on the Emperor's behalf in state matters for the first time. At the Imperial Palace's "Bara no Ma" room, he signed and stamped government documents, signing Naruhito and adding his own name Fumihito on the lower left.

He signed 3 government ordinances and a document related to ranks and decorations approved from a Cabinet meeting earlier in the day. Emperor Naruhito returned to Japan in the evening after a 4-day trip to the UK for the state funeral of Queen Elizabeth II.

Photo/info: Sankei, Jiji, FNN

Crown Prince Akishino acts on behalf of Emperor for 1st time - The Japan News
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Crown Princess Kiko will visit Akita Prefecture on October 11 to inspect activities of Imperial Gift Foundation Boshi-Aiiku-kai where she serves as president.

It will be her 4th visit to Akita Prefecture. She last visited in 2017 for the 130th anniversary of Japanese Red Cross Society Akita branch.
Crown Prince Akishino and Crown Princess Kiko attended the 70th anniversary of the establishment of Zenkoku Kokuritsu Daigaku Fuzoku Rengo ( National University Annex School PTA Union ) in Shinjuku Ward today, September 30:

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Crown Prince Akishino and Crown Princess Kiko arrive attended the opening performance of kyogen at the National Theatre, Chiyoda Ward, Tokyo on October 1:

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On October 3rd, the Akishino family met Princess Sonam Dechen Wangchuck of Bhutan and her sons at the temporary Akishino residence. The families spent an hour together and strolled the garden.

The princess attended the state funeral of former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and will attend the Blue Planet Prize on behalf of her father, King Jigme Singye Wangchuck, who is a 2022 laureate.

The Crown Prince couple and Prince Hisahito met Princess Sonam during their private visit to Bhutan in August 2019.

Photos: Asahi, FNN

Crown Prince meets Bhutan royals - The Japan News

The two families spent about an hour talking and looking at plants in the garden of the Crown Prince’s residence in the Moto-Akasaka district, the agency said.

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