Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko to Pay Respects to War Dead in the Philippines

Japan's Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko are slated for a five-day state visit to the Philippines on January 26. This is in commemoration of the 60th anniversary of the normalization of bilateral ties between Japan and the Philippines. This will be the the first time that the royal couple will visit the country as a sovereign. They came here as crown prince and princess in 1962. Their visit comes after the invitation of President Benigno Aquino during his state visit to Japan last June.

The emperor and empress will also pay respects to war dead and pray for peace. The Philippines, occupied by Japan from 1941 until 1945, was one of the worst casualties of World War II. The emperor’s father, Emperor Hirohito, was the commander of the Japanese forces at that time.

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