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Wednesday, 30th November 2011
In General Japan News,

Prince Akishino calls for new considerations on retirement age

Japan’s Prince Akishino has called for the imperial retirement age to be reconsidered in the wake of his father’s ill health.

During a news conference to mark his 46th birthday, the Prince suggested the Imperial Household should be more flexible about Emperor Akihito’s workload as he is 77-years-old.

He said: "When you pass a certain age, it gradually becomes difficult for people to do various things."

Although the Emperor’s role is entirely ceremonial, he is highly-regarded by his people and the country remains strict that the line of succession remains male.

This means Prince Naruhito’s ten-year-old daughter, Princess Aiko, will not have the opportunity to take the throne, though her five-year-old cousin Prince Hisahito might.

Currently Akishino’s elder brother Naruhito is next in line to the throne.

Last week, the Emperor was released from hospital following an 18-day stay related to mild bronchial pneumonia.

He previously suffered threats to his health in 2003, when he underwent surgery for prostate cancer.

Posted by Mark Smith  

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