TOKYO — Dignitaries from over 190 countries and international organizations are expected to attend a ceremony in October proclaiming Emperor Naruhito’s ascension to the Chrysanthemum Throne, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Wednesday.
The “Sokuirei Seiden no gi” ceremony scheduled for Oct. 22 is one of the major events planned in the fall for the new emperor, who ascended the throne on May 1 following the abdication of his father, former Emperor Akihito, on April 30 — the first Japanese monarch to abdicate in about 200 years.
In the previous enthronement ceremony for the former emperor in 1990, a total of 160 countries and international organizations participated. The Japanese government has since increased the number of countries it recognizes from 165 to 195.
“This is the largest ceremony out of all the ceremonies for the imperial succession. The government as a whole will put all efforts into making sure it proceeds smoothly and in a dignified manner,” Abe told a meeting of a preparatory committee.
Following the ritual, the emperor and Empress Masako will parade in a convertible sedan, traveling along the approximately 5-kilometer route from the Imperial Palace to the Akasaka Palace.
The government will postpone the parade to Oct. 26 in the event of inclement weather. It will be canceled if the weather is also unfavorable on that day.