Japan Emperor to Issue Video Message on Abdication

TOKYO (Japan News/Yomiuri) -
Japan’s Emperor Akihito leaves Monday after the extraordinary Diet session was formally opened at the upper house of the parliament in Tokyo. (AP Photo/Koji Sasahara)
Japan’s Emperor Akihito leaves Monday after the extraordinary Diet session was formally opened at the upper house of the parliament in Tokyo. (AP Photo/Koji Sasahara)

Japan’s Emperor Akihito, who reportedly intends to abdicate the throne, is expected to express his thoughts to the public on Monday in an unusual video message.

Akihito is expected to convey his thoughts on the system that positions the emperor as the symbol of the state, and address the series of media reports regarding his abdication. The speech will be translated into English.

Abdication is an issue connected to the foundation of the nation that could significantly change the Imperial family system. Since July 13, there have been a series of news reports over Akihito’s intention to abdicate, and speculation is rife on the reason for this.

The only previous video message by Akihito came in the aftermath of the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake.